STC Sea Turtle Blog

Get Involved for International Coastal Cleanup Day Sept. 20th!

International Coastal Cleanup picHelp us turn the tide on trash! This Saturday, September 20, join us for the world’s largest volunteer effort on behalf of our ocean by participating in the Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup Day! This is an international event, and there are many ways you can get involved locally. If you live near a coastal community, click here to see what’s going on in your town–

Even if there is not an official organized event near you, you can still play your part in helping to clean up our planet. Wherever you are and whatever you are doing this weekend, take a trash bag out with you and pick up litter or recyclables that you find. Click here to find all the tools you need to organize a cleanup on your own–


Last year, nearly 650,000 people participated in the 2013 Cleanup, with events held in 44 states and in more than 90 countries and locations around the globe.

If you plan on participating in any capacity, make sure you sign-up here and take the pledge so Ocean Conservancy can keep track of the data.

If you’re a diver, you can also sign-up for any of the Dive Against Debris events happening across the state of Florida. Click here for more info or check out host Tampa Bay Green Consortium’s website. 

Marine debris is especially a problem in Florida and affects human health and safety, endangers our marine wildlife and costs Florida millions in wasted resources and lost revenue each year. One of the biggest impacts to marine debris in Florida is the impact to our sea turtles, one of our oldest creatures on Earth.  These beautiful marine creatures are very vulnerable to plastics and other marine debris. They commonly swallow plastic bags, mistaking them for jellyfish.  They are often found off the Florida coasts entangled in discarded nets and fishing lines, and are frequently found with ingested fish hooks. Florida is a large nesting ground for sea turtles and hatchlings are also affected by marine debris. When hatchlings move towards the water, physical objects like trash and marine debris, endangering their lives, often obstruct them.

A juvenile turtle has netting removed from its throat.

A juvenile turtle has netting removed from its throat.

We need your help to solve this problem. For nearly three decades, volunteers with Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup® have picked up everything imaginable along the world’s shorelines: cigarette butts, food wrappers, abandoned fishing gear and even automobiles and kitchen appliances.

Some Florida cleanup events taking place from 9am – 12pm on Saturday, September 20:

Cape Coral:

  • Horton Park located at 2600 SE 26th Place, Cape Coral, FL33904.

Deerfield Beach:

  • Deerfield Beach. Take Hillsboro Boulevard to A1A and turn right (south). Turn left on S.E. 1st Street and park across the street from the Fire Station. Sign in and pick up a parking pass (limited number available) at the chickee hut.
  • Deerfield Island Park. Take Hillsboro Boulevard to Riverview Rd. and turn left (north). Volunteers can particpate either on shore or by kayak/canoe, but must bring their own watercraft. A free shuttle to the Park is available for those wanting to cleanup the shoreline and will run from 9 am until 4 pm.

Ft. Lauderdale:

  • Lauderdale-by-the-Sea. Sign in at El Prada Park, approximately two blocks north of the pier.
  • Fort Lauderdale South Beach Park. Sign is located under the Australian Pine trees. Parking passes are pending.

 Ft. Myers:

  • Bunche Beach located at 18201 John Morris Road, Fort Myers, FL33931.
  • Fort Myers Beach Elementary School located at 2751 Oak Street, Fort Myers Beach, FL 33931.
  • Lovers Key event field located at 8700 Estero Blvd, Fort Myers Beach, FL 33931.


  • Hollywood Beach North. The Cleanup location is at NorthBeachPark at the end of Sheridan Street. When you arrive at the gate, tell park personnel you are participating in the Coastal Cleanup. Sign in station is halfway down the park on the right (east) side.
  • Hollywood Beach Central. Park in the garage at the south end of the Oceanwalk Mall, located at A1A and Hollywood Boulevard. Sign-in is at the Oceanwalk Mall outdoor pavilion. No parking passes are available this year.
  • Hollywood Beach South. Sign in at KeatingPark, Magnolia Terrace and Surf Road. Parking passes will be available from the Site Captain once you sign in.


  • Blue Cypress Park located at 4012 University Boulevard North.
  • Castaway Island Preserve located at 2885 San Pablo Road South.
  • County Dock Boat Ramp located at 11964 Mandarin Road, Next to Walter Jones Memorial Park.
  • Ft. Caroline National Memorial located at 12713 Fort Caroline Road.
  • Helen Cooper Floyd Park (Little Jetties) located at 3600 S.R. A1A.
  • Hogan Creek located at 314 Palmetto Street, Parking behind Jacksonville Historical Society. Site not suitable for children.
  • Huguenot Memorial Park located at 10980 Heckscher Drive.
  • Intracoastal Waterway Boat Ramp located at 2510 2nd Avenue North, Site not suitable for children.
  • NS Mayport Jetties Pavilion #3 located at Bon Homme Richard Street, Across from Damage Control Wet Trainer Facility. (Volunteers must have base access or arrange base access.)
  • Joe Carlucci Boat Ramp/Heritage River Road located at 8414 Heritage River Road, Boat Ramp 1 mile off of Heckscher Drive.
  • Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park located at 500 Wonderwood Drive, Atlantic Beach, Meet at Dolphin Plaza.
  • Northbank Riverwalk located at 221 Riverside Avenue, Parking on Jackson Street & behind YMCA.
  • Reddie Point Preserve located at 4499 Yachtsman Way.
  • Tillie K. Fowler Regional Park located at 7000 Roosevelt Boulevard.

Melbourne Beach:

  • Barrier Island Center located at 8385 South Highway A1A, Melbourne Beach, Florida 32951 will be offering free T-shirts for participants.

Pompano Beach:

  • Pompano Beach. Park north of Atlantic Boulevard between N. Riverside Drive and A1A. Sign in and pick up a parking pass (limited number) at Pavilion 2 north of the pier. Place the parking pass on the dashboard of your vehicle for the duration of the Cleanup.


  • Camp Bayou Outdoor Learning located at 4140 24th Street 33570


  • Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation located at 333 San-Cap Road, Sanibel, FL 33957.
  • Sanbel Causeway (Island B) located at 19931 Sanibel Causeway Road, Sanibel, FL 33957.


  • Al Palonis Park located at 5040 Culbreath Key Way 33611.
  • Courtney Campbell Causeway located at 7740 Courtney Campbell Causeway Blvd. 33607
  • Davis Island Sea Plane Basin located at 1200 Severn Ave 33606
  • Mann Wagon Park located at 1101 Rivercove St. 33604
  • McKay Bay Nature Park located at 134 34th St. 33605. Prepare to get muddy.


  • Baker Creek Boat Ramp 12095 Thonotosassa Rd. 33592.

**For more locations, please visit