PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — The third annual Robbie Atchinson Beach Clean-Up event took place Sunday morning over at Panama City Beach.
Achinson was one of the founders of the group ‘Keep PCB Beautiful’, but passed away in 2018 from cancer.
Sunday’s beach clean up was hosted in his memory, as volunteers and organizers helped to clean up trash off the white sands.
Volunteers and group members gathered at the county pier Sunday morning for an organized beach clean up effort, some participated for the first time.
“I really believe in the beautification of the beaches, I just wanted to give back to my community and get involved,” said Volunteer, Lena Moretz.
“I feel like you need to give back to the community that you live in. I come to the beach and see all the trash leftover after visitors and I just wanna do my part and help pick it up,” said Volunteer, Katherine Hanson.
Volunteers see many different items when picking up after people.
“I’ve seen deflated beach balls, we’re still picking up after the fireworks for the 4th of July, a lot of snack bags and drink cups too,” said Moretz.
“A lot of beer bottles, beer cans, stuff like that, beach towels too,” said Volunteer, Michael Holloway.
“There’s been a lot of bottles, leftover tags from blankets and tents, a lot of cigarette butts also,” said Hanson.
Wildlife is a big part of why many volunteer to help clean up the beaches.
“It’s a lot of wildlife out on the beach, and I think it’s important to make sure that they stay safe and don’t do things like choke on trash. These are known to be really beautiful beaches and I think that’s a reputation that should be kept up and picking up trash is an important part of that,” said Volunteer, Nicholas Norris.
Leave no trace is the message that many are sharing.
“Even like tourists that are just coming by for the day or something, they should hold themselves accountable and pick up after themselves. Unfortunately, that’s something you don’t see very often but it’s good to do your part,” said Norris.
“It’s not hard at all, I feel like we’ve been out here for an hour and a half and the two of us have collected about four bags worth of trash. People just need to be held accountable and pick up after themselves,” said Holloway.
If you would like to get involved in any of ‘Keep Panama City Beach Beautiful’ future events, you can find out how on their Facebook page below.