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Volunteer group pulls thousands of pounds of trash from Arcade Creek in Del Paso Heights

Volunteers gather thousands of pounds of trash along Arcade Creek in Del Paso Heights
Volunteers gather thousands of pounds of trash along Arcade Creek in Del Paso Heights 01:51

DEL PASO HEIGHTS -  Dozens of volunteers pulled thousands of pounds of trash from Arcade Creek on Sunday. It's part of a major effort to keep Sacramento's waterways healthy.

They say they're not just making a dent, they're making a difference.

"It's overwhelming because you don't know where to start...there's so much of it," said volunteer Jennifer Padua. 

Padua spent her Sunday morning in Del Paso Heights digging up garbage in arcade creek.

"We said this is going to be, this is going to be a fun day. Because we knew it would be very challenging," said volunteer Becca Berggren.

Padua and Berggren are volunteers with Sacramento Picks It Up!, a group of people passionate about keeping the city clean.

"Mostly, we want to make it a mentality shift for folks to not just walk by it. Pick it up," said Allyson Seconds, founder of Sacramento Picks It Up!

Seconds started the group last year and it quickly grew to 2,000 members.

"It just shows that it struck a chord," said Seconds.

The group encourages individual pick-ups and organizes major efforts like the one in Arcade Creek.

All these like-minded people coming together and feeling really committed to doing this pulled out thousands of pounds of garbage over the last three days.

Crystal Tobias, data team member

The textiles, the metal, shopping carts, office chairs, huge pieces of carpeting," said Crystal Tobias, a data team member. "What we have done is reduce the amount of legacy trash that's in here."

Legacy trash is garbage that's accumulated in the channel for decades. And not only are they picking it up, but they're also quantifying the trash by numbers, weight, and volume.

They'll present the data to city officials, hoping to show the importance of protecting the waterways.

We're not out here to make it pretty, we're out here to make it healthy. The trash is choking the creeks.

Dedicated to the dirty work, these volunteers know they're making a difference, one piece of trash at a time.

"Wherever we go, we got our little picker and our bag, and it's just what we do," a volunteer said. 

Volunteers plan to hold another clean-up in Arcade Creek in two weeks.

If you'd like to join the effort - you can sign up on the Sacramento Picks It Up! Facebook page.

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