Community cleans up Castaic Lake

Ed Avila holds a bag as boys from Cub Scout Pack 580 pick up trash at a community clean up event at Castaic Lake Saturday morning. January 25, 2020. Bobby Block / The Signal.

Members of the Castaic Elementary School Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) along with volunteers from the community gathered at Castaic Lake to clean up garbage in the lake and surrounding areas Saturday morning.

Participants were able to enjoy coffee and doughnuts before gathering their garbage bags and grabbers to head down to the lagoon portion of the lake to clean it up.

Christine Aung and daughter Jenny find trash on the shoreline of Castaic Lake Saturday morning at a community cleanup event. January 25, 2020. Bobby Block / The Signal.

“My coworker Jill had a great idea that we should reach out to our community and what’s a better way than to get everyone to come and clean up some trash and give back to the community?” said Allison Dean, PTA president of Castaic Elementary School.

According to Dean, more than 100 people showed up between the hours of 9 to 11 a.m. to participate in the garbage cleanup.

Gabriel Yeager picks up a piece of trash he found on the shore of Castaic Lake Saturday morning as part of a community clean-up event as his parents Charles and Marie look on. January 25, 2020. Bobby Block / The Signal.

“The turnout, I am so happy with,” said Jill Lindkamp, community outreach coordinator from Castaic Elementary School PTA. “It seemed to get shared a lot on social media and I was a little nervous with it being a first-time event. We had no idea how many people would show.”

One volunteer said she and her friends planned to go on a hike at the lake, but saw the opportunity to help clean the area.

Abby McGinnis picks up trash at a community clean-up event at Castaic Lake Saturday morning. January 25, 2020. Bobby Block / The Signal.]

“We figured we could pick up trash while we hiked,” said Newhall resident Carla Tuttle. “I think this is really great and we need to have more events like this.”

Before seeing how many people attended, Lindkamp said she and her colleagues have discussed making this an annual or biannual event. She said the PTA will be in contact with people from the California Department of Parks and Recreation to see when cleanup efforts are needed so another cleanup day can be organized.

Erin McGinnis and daughter Abby, center, pick up trash at Castaic lake with Addison Mayberry, right, as part of a community clean-up event Saturday morning. January 25, 2020. Bobby Block / The Signal.

After the cleanup was over, lunch was provided by the Friends of Castaic Lake organization.

“It feels really good that we have a tight-knit community,” said Lindkamp. “Everyone really wants to help our town and what better way than our own backyard gem?”

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