SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. — West Virginia State Parks announced Monday that 10 parks will participate in the first annual Tread Lightly! Day WV on Sept. 30 as part of a statewide effort to clean up public lands.
State parks participating in the event include Bluestone, Cacapon Resort, Canaan Valley Resort, Cedar Creek, Chief Logan, North Bend, Tomlinson Run, Tu-Endie-Wei, Twin Falls Resort and Tygart Lake.
“West Virginia’s natural beauty is a treasure that belongs to us all and Tread Lightly! Day WV is an opportunity for us to come together and show our commitment to preserving these lands for future generations,” said Brett McMillion, director of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, which oversees the state parks system.
A ceremonial clean up is scheduled to take place at Chief Logan on Sept. 30, but members of the public who want to do their part are encouraged to take the Tread Lightly! Do Your Part Pledge. Those who participate are asked to pack out one bag of trash on Sept. 30 during an outdoor adventure and dispose of it with their regular trash. Participants are also encouraged to post a photo to social media with the hashtag #WVTLDAY so organizers can estimate the amount of trash that gets cleaned up.
With tourism booming, a lot of people are coming to West Virginia and we want to set an example for how to take care of our public lands,” said Jerry Bain, chairman of the Country Roads Coalition. “If people visiting our state know that we work this hard to take care of our public lands, they will respect it too and it will make more people want to come to West Virginia because they will see that we are stewarding something truly special here.”
The clean up is a public-private partnership led in part by Tread Lightly!, a national nonprofit that promotes responsible recreation through stewardship programs and ethics education. Other partners include Rodney Loftis and Son Contracting, the Country Roads Coalition, BF Goodrich and the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection. Rodney Loftis, the state-level sponsor, is helping transfer and properly dispose of debris, the Country Roads Coalition is providing volunteers, BF Goodrich is providing funding through its Outstanding Trails Program, and the WVDEP is providing trash bags and drop offs through its Open Dump Cleanup Program.
To learn more about stewardship and conservation at West Virginia’s state parks and how visitors can help keep parks clean, visit WVstateparks.com/leave-no-trace. To learn more about Tread Lightly!’s mission and work, visit treadlightly.org.