SANTA CRUZ COUNTY, Calif. - A big coastal cleanup is planned for Saturday to keep trash off Central Coast beaches.
The 33rd annual cleanup is organized by Save our Shores. Last year, more than 3,000 volunteers picked up more than ten tons of trash preventing it from entering the ocean.
Panther Beach in Santa Cruz County is one of 77 beaches and waterways that people can volunteer to clean up on Saturday.
"I don't like it. There are times when I have picked it up, and taken it back if I have a bag to put it in,” said beachgoer April Macdonald.
“Usually there are a lot of bonfires, that maybe haven't been put out properly and there are a lot of beer bottles around them,” said beachgoer Jenna Boomgard.
Save our Shores has been committed to cleaning up beaches in Santa Cruz and Monterey Counties for the past 32 years. The organization is concerned about all kinds of trash, big and small.
"We are concentrating on the micro plastics, the tiny bite sized pieces of trash and those are the most harmful. It endangers our wildlife and it also affects water quality,” said Save our Shores Communications Manager, Ryan Kallabis.
Ryan Kallabis says keeping the beaches clean can be as easy as changing your buying habits.
"If you are going to the store and you are buying single use plastics, that's disposable spoons, utensils, plates, cups things like that, try to stay away from them. You know, I've got a reusable coffee mug right here and I bring it everywhere, it's awesome!"
If you don't want to change your shopping habit, the easiest way to keep beaches clean is by cleaning up after yourself.
"I always take my own trash out,” said April Macdonald.
"I'll clean up after myself, and sometimes I'll bring a trash bag and clean up some of the other surrounding trash,” said Boomgard.
The coastal cleanup runs from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, September 16th. It's not too late to sign up.
For more information visit the Save our Shores website here