To mark Earth Day on Saturday, people on the South Fork can join in beach, woodland, and roadside cleanups from Southampton to Montauk, or celebrate the earth at an institution that focuses on the area's natural world every day.
The Great Montauk Cleanup, sponsored by the Concerned Citizens of Montauk with East Hampton Town, will be held on Saturday starting at Kirk Park, where bags and gloves will be distributed at 9 a.m. Volunteers can clean whatever areas they wish -- the beach, the roadsides, the woods, or a park. Their hauls can be dropped off in a Dumpster next to Kirk Park when they are through. In case of rain, the cleanup will take place on April 29.
Kids who want to do their part in the Montauk cleanup without their parents holding them back can join Camp SoulGrow to head by bus from its downtown studio to Ditch Plain Beach between 10 and 11:30 a.m. Advance registration is required at firstname.lastname@example.org, and a donation has been requested. Kids who take part will get a long-sleeve T-shirt.
Also in Montauk, the East Hampton Trails Preservation Society will lead a cleanup along a section of the Paumanok Path on the east side of the downtown area. Participants will meet at the Montauk Library parking lot and walk along a fern-lined section of trail, stopping to visit horses, and then leave the wooded area to pick up litter along Route 27 as they make their way back to the starting point. Bags will be provided. Boots and waterproof shoes have been recommended. Jim Zajac, the leader of the 2.5-mile working walk, can be reached at 212-769-4311.
Imagination Nature will have people fan out to beaches from Montauk to Wainscott on Saturday between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. for its fourth annual Shoreline Sweep, which is co-sponsored this year by East Hampton Town and its litter committee. Shoreline Sweep volunteers in Montauk will team up with C.C.O.M. volunteers. Elsewhere, they have been asked to gather at any public beachhead on the ocean or the bays and to work their way to the next one. They must either take their own bags and gloves or first stop by Indian Wells Beach in Amagansett or Main Beach in East Hampton to pick them up. Attendants will be on hand at the two beaches between 9 and 10 a.m.
Debris can be deposited in public beach trash areas, where it will be picked up at the end of the event. Dell Cullum, an environmental activist, anti-litter crusader, and nature photographer, is organizing the cleanup. He can be reached by calling or texting 631-377-6555 or by email at email@example.com. The rain date is April 29, and updates will be posted on the Imagination Nature Facebook page.
In Bridgehampton, the Southampton Trails Preservation Society will take on a cleanup of a trail along the old railroad track near Lumber Lane starting at 9:30 a.m. Participants have been asked to wear gloves. Bags will be provided. Marilyn Kirkbright, at 631-726-7503, can provide a more specific meeting spot.
The trails group's work is part of the Great East End Cleanup, a two-day townwide effort in Southampton to remove litter and debris from all sorts of public areas. Last year, 750 volunteers removed more than 60 tons of litter and debris from parks, trails, beaches, and roadsides in Southampton Town, according to Councilwoman Christine Scalera.
The Great East End Cleanup will take place rain or shine both Saturday and Sunday. Volunteers have been asked to register in advance at southamptontownny.gov. They can select any public property to clean. The town will provide participants with bags and free disposal passes for its recycling centers. These must be picked up in advance through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the North Sea transfer station office on Majors Path or from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Southampton Town Hall's Citizens Response Center on Hampton Road in Southampton. Litter sticks will be available to buy or rent at the North Sea transfer station.
Finally, the South Fork Natural History Museum will observe Earth Day with a free open house on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Members of the Shinnecock Nation will visit the museum with family crafts, music, dancing, and food samples from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. There will be field walks focused on plant conservation and plant uses and traditions. Children can get their faces painted for free between 10 a.m. and noon, and those 5 and older can join a snapping turtle challenge game.
From 2 to 3 p.m., Jungle Bob will bring his Live Animal Extravaganza to the museum, introducing visitors to creatures such as snakes, lizards, tarantulas, and turtles from around the world. The animal show costs $8 for children 12 and under, $15 for adults. Museum members will pay $5 and $10.