By Madina Toure

The Riverkeeper, a clean water advocate, is hosting seven cleanups in Flushing, College Point, Long Island City and Astoria as part of its fourth annual Riverkeeper Sweep, a day of service for the Hudson River.

The borough’s sweep projects, which will take place May 9, are Powell’s Cove Park’s Coastal Wetlands, Astoria Park, Jennifer’s Annual Flushing Bay Cleanup, Gantry Plaza State Park, Hallet’s Cove at Socrates Sculpture Park, Newtown Creek by Land and Newtown Creek by Canoe, the last three in Long Island City.

Riverkeeper is a member-supported watchdog organization that works to protect the Hudson River and its tributaries as well as the drinking-water supply for nine million city and Hudson Valley residents.

“It started as a real opportunity for us to help organize people and local communities to do this kind of stewardship effort in our local waterway,” said Dana Gulley, Riverkeeper’s manager of strategic partnerships, outreach and volunteer programs.

Gulley said some of the sweep projects, such as the Empire Dragon Boat Team’s Flushing Bay Shoreline Cleanup and the Coastal Preservation Network’s cleanup of the shoreline in Powell’s Cove Park, are projects that have been occurring separately from the sweep and the groups decided to align their projects with the day of service.

Others were initiated by individuals who noticed an issue in their area and elected to join the sweep, she explained.

“This event is all about partnerships,” she said. “We work with hundreds of partners who bring these events to life in their communities.”

Over 100 sweep projects will take place throughout the entire Hudson River Estuary.

Sweep projects are also taking place in Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, New Jersey, Rockland County, Westchester County, Putnam County, Orange County, Ulster County, Dutchess County, Columbia County, Greene County, Albany County and Rensselaer County.

Reach reporter Madina Toure by e-mail at mtour[email protected]local.com or by phone at (718) 260–4566.

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