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Keep the Midlands Beautiful Lakeside Litter Sweep on Lake Murray a Huge Success!

Lake Murray, SC 09/21/2023 - Keep the Midlands Beautiful (KMB) 2023 annual Lakeside Litter Sweep event held on Saturday, September 16th from 8:30 am to 12:30 pm was a huge success! A total of 470 volunteers and support personnel removed litter and recyclables from Lake Murray’s shorelines, boat ramps, parks, islands, and even from underwater, as well as roadways.

These hard-working volunteers removed a total of 9,278 pounds of litter from the shores and below the surface of dozens of islands and boat landings, parks, roadways, and shoreline neighborhoods. The event was held in conjunction with South Carolina Department of Natural Resources “Beach Sweep, River Sweep” day.

Wateree Dive Center divers and support personnel collected 1600 pounds of the total trash collected at an area marina. For comparison, in 2022, KMB had 235 participants and 5,783 pounds of litter was picked up. “The big turnout shows that area citizens really do care about this Midlands natural resource and want to help keep it clean.”, says Laura Blake-Orr, KMB Program Administrator.

In addition to general litter such as bottles and cans, volunteers took away items such as damaged buoys, rusted grills, umbrellas, chairs, make-shift toilets, dock debris, broken tents, and three trampolines! KMB extends a special thank you to its two main financial partners, Dominion Energy and PalmettoPride. KMB partnered with Keep Newberry County Beautiful to provide a check-in location in Prosperity.

Area businesses and organizations donated close to $3000 in gift certificates that will be awarded to volunteers for 10 various categories such as KMB’s youngest volunteer, a 4-year-old, and the oldest who is a 78-year young lady, and more. In addition, all volunteers are eligible for random drawings for more prizes; winners will be notified in the coming days.

This was truly a community event! We had families, individuals, grandparents with grandchildren, and groups come out and travel to islands by shuttle boat services generously donated by seven area boat rental companies and people in their own boats, as well as landlubbers who chose to pick up litter along the shoreline and roads.

Volunteers returned to one of four check-in stations to enjoy lunch and receive an event t-shirt and thank you gifts. KMB could not organize such a huge event alone; we appreciate the dedication, collaboration, and substantial contributions of over 25 community organizations, government agencies, and businesses. KMB is seeking individuals and groups to make a long-term commitment to maintaining Lake Murray by adopting an island or boat ramp through the Adopt-A-Waterway program.

Research shows that when people see litter in a particular area, they are more likely to add litter to that area. Clean-up events like these are therefore very important. We encourage volunteers to continue to support our efforts to keep Lexington and Richland counties clean, green and beautiful year-round. Learn more about what we do, how we do it, and how you can help at


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