STRAITS — The Crystal Coast Waterkeeper office and Carteret County Big Sweep are looking for volunteers to help with a roadside cleanup from 9-11 a.m. Saturday in the Down East area.

This cleanup is one of several going on that day. Big Sweep is an N.C. State Extension program dedicated to addressing the issue of litter in Carteret County through cleanups and public education. It has organized a countywide cleanup event, with various sweeps going on at multiple locations and times throughout the day.

The Waterkeeper office announced Monday it will hold a litter cleanup along Crow Hill Road, located in the Down East area near the Straits community. Local environmentalist and Davis resident Susan Wilder sent out the announcement by email Monday.

Ms. Wilder said Waterkeeper program coordinator Rebecca Drohan visited Crow Hill Road Monday. She told Ms. Wilder she’d found “a good amount of trash…including a vinyl recliner.”

“It’s a great time to clean this area, since it’s not a disaster right now,” Ms. Drohan said in the announcement. “If we can stay relatively on top of it, we may be able to prevent it from becoming the mess it usually is.”

Ms. Wilder said Wednesday in an interview with the News-Times that Crow Hill Road is “a real hot spot for litter.”

“I was in contact with our N.C. Department of Transportation engineer,” she said. “(NCDOT) mowers will run over litter because that road has a mowing contract, but not a litter contract. We hope to arrange to hear about mowing times beforehand so we can arrange a cleanup (prior to mowing).”

Ms. Wilder advises interested participants to wear long pants and sturdy shoes for the cleanup. She also advised bringing work gloves since they’ll be handling litter, a hat for shade and insect repellant.

The tentative staging area for the cleanup is at the intersection of Crow Hill Road and Gillikin Road.

Those interested in participating in the cleanup may visit the Facebook page and click the “going” link to inform organizers of their intent to join the cleanup.

Interested participants with questions or who want to inform organizers of their intent to take part in the cleanup may also contact Crystal Coast Waterkeeper Larry Baldwin at his office number, 252-514-0629, his cell number, 252-670-1413, or by email at

They may also contact Ms. Drohan at her cell number, 919-961-3299, or by email at

Meanwhile, additional cleanup events will be going on throughout the county Saturday. According to a Wednesday announcement from Big Sweep, this cleanup event wraps up a month-long Litter Free Carteret Initiative.

“At the April 15, 2019 Carteret County Board of Commissioners meeting, the board of commissioners designated the month of April as Litter Free Carteret month,” Big Sweep staff said. “The county launched a county-wide community awareness campaign led by Carteret County Big Sweep. The campaign included designated cleanup days at designated cleanup sites and citizen engagement through social media, polling, surveys and volunteer efforts.”

In addition to the Crow Hill Road cleanup, additional cleanups will occur at the following locations at the following times Saturday:

•    7:30 a.m.: Cape Lookout National Seashore, staging at the Harkers Island Visitor Center.

•    8 a.m.: Atlantic Beach, staging at the Circle, located south of the Fort Macon Road/Atlantic Beach Causeway intersection.

•    8 a.m.: Radio Island, staging at the Radio Island Public Beach Access.

•    9:30 a.m.: Emerald Isle, staging at Emerald Woods at 9404 Coast Guard Road.

•    10 a.m.: Indian Beach, staging at the Salter Path Public Beach Access.

•    10 a.m.: Newport, staging at Fort Benjamin Park.

•    10 a.m.: Pine Knoll Shores, staging at the Iron Steamer Public Beach Access.

More information about the countywide cleanup event is available by contacting Big Sweep coordinator Dee Smith at 252-222-6352 or by email at

More information on the Crystal Coast Waterkeeper is available at

More information on Carteret Big Sweep is available at

Contact Mike Shutak at 252-726-7081 ext. 206, email; or follow on Twitter at @mikesccnt.


(1) comment


A proactive approach is to issue citations to the pigs who litter. Fines for unsecured loads and blowing trash from pickups would curb the majority of roadside litter and fund cleanup efforts.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.