Macon Water Authority (MWA) Hosts Successful 17th Annual Ocmulgee Alive!
(Macon, GA – Oct. 25, 2023) The Macon Water Authority (MWA) and its Macon Water Alliance, in partnership with Keep Macon-Bibb Beautiful and Macon-Bibb Parks and Recreation, hosted the 17th annual Ocmulgee Alive! this month (Saturday, Oct. 14). The efforts of 135 volunteers helped to remove approximately 165 bags of trash during the cleanup.
YKK USA served as a corporate sponsor, marking 15 years the local company has been a leading supporter of Ocmulgee Alive! (YKK held their company cleanup the weekend prior on Saturday, Oct. 7.) Other participating organizations and individuals volunteering their time included teachers and students from Mount de Sales Academy, Stratford Academy, and Tattnall Square Academy, as well as Riverside Cemetery & Conservancy.
Many volunteers assembled for Ocmulgee Alive at the Spring Street boat ramp to clean the Ocmulgee Heritage Trail and banks of the river, but cleanups at other sites across the community took place as well. Other cleanup locations included Vineville Branch in Riverside Cemetery, Williamson Road, Beaverdam Creek near Sheraton Drive, and Joe Tamplin Boulevard (site of the YKK cleanup on Oct. 7).
Some interesting items collected during the two Saturday cleanups of Ocmulgee Alive! included a window air conditioning unit, a Razor metal scooter, tires, suitcases, a birdfeeder, and lots of plastic trash and paper debris.
Ocmulgee Alive! is affiliated with the statewide Rivers Alive campaign, which is a Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) Outreach Program. Rivers Alive is Georgia’s annual waterway cleanup, which targets all water bodies in the state, including creeks, streams, rivers, lakes/reservoirs, beaches, and wetlands.
The goal of Ocmulgee Alive – and all Rivers Alive cleanups across the state – is to create awareness of and involvement in the preservation of water resources. In addition, the MWA staff and other participants in this year’s Ocmulgee Alive! river cleanup recognize the importance of water quality to the quality of life and economic development in Macon-Bibb County.
“The17th annual Ocmulgee Alive river cleanup was a huge success this year,” says Natalie McEver, MWA Supervisor of Environmental Compliance, who organized the river cleanup on behalf of the Authority. “We all have a responsibility to take care of our natural resources, and it was amazing to see members from all over the community participate. I am definitely looking forward to next year.”
In addition to being a popular source of outdoor recreation, the Ocmulgee River is a primary source, along with Javors Lucas Lake, of raw water for producing MWA tap water – voted Best Tasting Drinking Water in Georgia this year.
Chris Wood, Ph.D.