More than 300 volunteers helped Save Our Shores remove 2,034 pounds of trash and debris from 16 beaches in Santa Cruz and Monterey counties.
The environmental organization hosted its annual Star Spangled Beach Cleanup Saturday, July 5 -- it's their second largest cleanup each each year.
Cleanups were held at Davenport Main Beach, 4 Mile Beach, Cowell and Main Beach, Twin Lakes State Beach, Seabright State Beach, Seacliff State Beach, Panther/Coast Dairies State Beach, Sunny Cove, Hidden Beach, Moran Lake Beach, Beer Can Beach, Its Beach, Del Monte Beach, Sand City Beach, La Selva Beach and Carmel City Beach.
Davenport Main Beach was the dirtiest site -- where volunteers removed more than 245 pounds of waste. Another 235 pounds was cleaned from Panther Beach.
The most commonly found debris was cigarette butts and firework remains.
In positive news, volunteers removed more than 200 pounds less of trash from Cowell and Main Beach than they did the prior year. After July 4, 2013, volunteers removed 331 pounds of trash from the two Santa Cruz beaches --- this year they cleaned up 106 pounds.
“When I arrived at Main Beach at 7:30 a.m., the city and Boardwalk crews were already out in full force,” said Rachel Kippen of Save Our Shores. “With SOS outreach to thousands of visitors on July 4th, the hundreds of extra trash cans and dumpsters at busy beaches, the increased fines and enforcement for fireworks and littering, our collaborative precautionary efforts really paid off.”