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Volunteers needed for the 2013 Big Sweep

CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WWAY) --  Leaders in New Hanover County need your help to clean up nearly 40 miles of waterway for this year's Big Sweep.
"Here in our county, we will be cleaning up the beach and cleaning up a lot of things in between in our county.  New Hanover County is surrounded by water, so we have a lot of places that need to get cleaned up,” said Jennifer O’Keefe, Environmental Educator.
O'Keefe says her mission in life is to help preserve and clean our area beaches.  A mission she hopes others will soon take up.
"There are a few different aspects that go into this.  There is the esthetic impact, we know litter looks ugly.  There is also the economic impact as well as the educational aspect to this clean up," said O’Keefe.
O'Keefe is helping spearhead the 2013 Big Sweep.  Leaders say that more than ten million pounds of trash have been picked up from our area beaches since the cleanup began in 1987.
“We find a big variety of things.  One thing we see is a lot of fishing line and rope and things like that.  That can entangle animals, as well as entangle people when they're swimming,” said O’Keefe.
This year’s Big Sweep is scheduled for Saturday, September 21.  O’Keefe says she is encouraging people of all ages to come and help clean the places we all love.
“I think a lot of times it's something that if you walk pass every day and you don't notice it, but when you really take a minute and start cleaning things up you really notice what's out there," said O’Keefe.
WWAY is a proud sponsor of the 2013 Big Sweep.  

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