JEFFERSON-The world’s second oldest river got a little help recently from a group of Gardner Webb students.
Tom Jones, a Gardner Webb Honors Association faculty advisor, and nearly 100 students made the two-and-a-half hour trip from Boiling Springs as part of a GWU service project.
According to an email from Jones, for more than 20 years, a group of GWU Honors students and science students, along with others, have participated in Operation Big Sweep. That effort started in the late 1960s as Beach Sweep, according to Jones, where individuals volunteered to adopt a stretch of beach and clean it up.
“Beach Sweep was so successful, that the program was expanded in the late 70’s to include all navigable waters including rivers, lakes, and even ponds,” Jones said. “This has become one of the highlights of the fall semester for our Honors students.”
The 88-member group worked in cooperation with the New River Conservancy, New River State Park and local outfitters to attack a 16-mile stretch of the New River.
The group camped at New River State Park, cleaned their combined stretches of river, attended St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in West Jefferson and took in a meal at Daniel Boone Inn.
They also managed to pull at least 38 old tires – along with other trash – from the river.
Reach Adam Orr at 336-489-3058.