September 19, 2017

Annual river cleanup to brighten banks of Au Sable River

Posted

OSCODA COUNTY –– The 23rd annual Au Sable River Cleanup takes place each year on the Saturday after Labor Day. This year, the cleanup will take place Sept. 9 and will cover the entire length of the river.

Beats will be assigned by Greg Noviski of Anglers of the Au Sable so that all parts of the river will be cleaned up. When the event began in 1994, only the main stream of the Au Sable was cleaned up, but it has since been expanded. Now, the cleanup includes the north and south branches and goes beyond Grayling to include portions of the trophy waters near Mio.

The northern portion of the cleanup will begin with a meeting at 9:45 a.m. at the Gates Au Sable Lodge located at 471 S. Stephan Bridge Rd. in Grayling and will then finish with the George Alexander Memorial barbecue luncheon in the same location, according to gateslodge.com. The contact for this location is Josh Greenberg, and he can be contacted at josh@gateslodge.com or by calling 989-348-8462.

“Teams are assigned and they will depart shortly after 10 a.m.,” Greenberg said. “Most cleaning occurs between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Lunch starts at around 12:30 and lasts until 2 or 3 p.m.”

Greenberg said people can expect to find trash in the log jams as well some fun while they’re cleaning.

“Waders help but I do have some that we loan out,” he said. “We provide garbage bags and trash pokers. We have tasks for everyone, from the most athletically gifted to the most inexperienced. We clean the parking lots at the river accesses and also will be sorting the garbage into recyclables.”

For the Mio area portion, the meeting time for float teams is 8 a.m. and for walkers it is 9 a.m. at the Comins Flats boat launch off McKinley Road east of Mio, according to Thomas Buhr of Anglers of the Au Sable.

“Walkers should bring waders if possible, but it is not necessary,” he said. “People need to contact Greg if they want to float. He will assign them a beat. We take care of all shuttles. Floaters need to be at Comins at 8 a.m. to register with me.”

A barbecue luncheon will also be hosted after this cleanup at approximately noon and there will be door prizes for participants. For more information or to volunteer, contact Buhr at 989-745-4957 or at tombuhr@prodigy.net.

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