100 volunteers clean up gulch for Earth Day
In honor of Earth Day, nearly 100 volunteers removed invasive plants from the Japanese Gulch during a work party on April 26.
Boeing employees and others from the community helped to pull up holly and ivy and collect trash from the second growth natural forest as part of the Earth Day Clean Up event, hosted by the Japanese Gulch Group and The Boeing Co.
Volunteers focused their efforts in the newly acquired portion of the gulch, starting near the Mukilteo Community Garden. They cleaned up for more than three hours.
“We removed enough holly to fill the city's work truck to overflowing, even when compacted,” said Kristin Kohorst, vice president of the group. It was a lot of holly. We removed several trash bags of garbage along the way, as well.”
Even so, Kohorst said there is much more work to be done in the forest.
“We barely scratched the surface,” she said.
In addition, volunteers helped the city posted signs for the wetlands located there. Native Growth Protected Area (NGPA) signs were also posted throughout as a reminder that no new trail work should be done until a master plan is in place.
The event was organized by Tyler Thompson and Todd Kaday, both Boeing employees and JGG members.
Since 2010, The Boeing Co. has solicited possible planet-friendly projects for the weekend before or after Earth Day. This is the fourth year in a row Boeing has partnered with the Japanese Gulch group for a Clean Up event in the gulch.
The work party on April 26 was one of about 30 projects done with the help of Boeing employees that day.
“The Boeing Earth Day event is a perfect partnership, bringing volunteers who live and work in the area out to Japanese Gulch to appreciate the beautiful resource we have in the great city of Mukilteo and to give back to the community by helping maintain the land for everyone to enjoy,” Thompson said.
Event sponsors were the Japanese Gulch Group and the city of Mukilteo.
Donations to the local non-profit provided the tools, gloves, necessary insurance coverage and water for the volunteers. The city provided workers, a dumpster and equipment to haul the yard waste to be composted.
Group members tagged the holly to be removed prior to the event to help volunteers recognize it.
The Japanese Gulch Group hosts work parties the first Sunday of every month. Want to help out? Meet at the Mukilteo Dog Park, 1301 Mukilteo Blvd., at 1 p.m.