Give Back

Ocean Lovers, Here's Your Chance to Clean the Coast

Well, not the whole coast, of course: But California Coastal Cleanup Day is all about picking a surfside spot and picking up litter.

Getty Images

What to Know

  • Saturday, Sept. 18, 9 a.m. to noon
  • There are several local meet-up spots at both the Pacific Ocean and near inland waterways
  • There's a way to tidy up your own neighborhood, too, if you'd like to join from home

Rolling your sleeves, limbering up, and proceeding to tidy the entirety of the California coastline?

No one would ask you to undertake such a monumental, though monumentally beautiful, task.

After all, the Golden State's celebrated shoreline runs for well over 1,000 miles, and stopping to pick up every cup, piece of paper, and random doodad along its sandy and/or rocky route just couldn't be done by a single human being.

But a single human being could definitely call upon a hundred yards of beach, give or take, over the course of a sunny Saturday morning, and see some impressive and life-enhancing results in the spiffy-up department.

And many such humans will be out, on Saturday, Sept. 18, which is California Coastal Cleanup Day.

Helmed by the California Coastal Commission, the massive volunteer effort, which saw over 74,000 pitch-inners in 2019, makes a difference on our beaches, rivers, lakes, creeks, and other waterways.

A big difference: Over 900,000 pounds of trash were collected from our beaches and waterways in 2019, which is, we can all agree, an epically mountainous amount of garbage.

It's trash that not only impacts the beauty of the waves, surf, and shores, but, more critically and urgently, it can harm the countless critters that live in and around our ocean, lakes, and rivers, as well as the health of various ecosystems.

Want to join a clean team on Sept. 18?

There are several groups fanning out to our region's many beaches, with Dockweiler, Hermosa, and Lunada Bay Beach all on the map. Further inland, spots like Coyote Creek will enjoy a lovely and important refresh on the final Saturday of summer.

But wait: If you'd like to stick close to home, you're invited to join the "largest one-day volunteer event in the country" by cleaning up areas in your neighborhood. You'll want to get the Cleanswell app to participate in the self-guided neighborhood cleanup, which is an all-through-September happening.

Tips, guidelines, and more are available on this page.

For more on this large-scale event, which is a gift to our neighbors and communities, animals and plants, and the wider, wilder world, find out how you can play an important part in an important day now.

Contact Us