DON'T TRASH MISSION BEACH
WE ARE DEDICATED TO KEEPING
MISSION BEACH BEAUTIFUL
We are residents of Mission Beach who have dedicated our free time to bringing attention to the trash left on our beaches, sidewalks, boardwalk, parks, alleys and streets on a daily basis.
This initiative began with the tireless work of Cathy Ives, who every morning gets up in the wee early hours to comb the beach and clean up the mess left behind by visitors.
Where are you from?
Born and raised in La Jolla, CA, a lifelong beachgoer.
What did you do in your prior life?
Sales and Marketing Manager which grew into blogging about the environment in 2008, before anyone knew what a blog was.
How long have you lived here?
Lived in MB for 35 years.
How long have you been cleaning up the beach?
On and off in Mission Beach since 2010. Cleaned beaches and around the world as well. I consider myself a beach rescuer, trying to get all the reusable items, towels, blankets, sheets, toys, reusable bottles and bags, clothing, recyclables, electronics, beach chairs, boogie boards, etc. off the beach before they go into a landfill and can be reused.
Approximately how much in total do you think you have collected over the years?
From 2018 to 2019 I did 691 Cleanups over 370.91 miles for a total of 12,606.12 pounds of trash. That is when I downloaded the app Clean Swell. I now used Ocean Conservatory which has more items to track, such as shoes, towels, and toys. This year, over 71,000 items.
How much money do you estimate you spend personally to try to keep the beach clean?
I spend $50 to $300 per month at the laundromat washing textiles. Maybe a tank of gas a month donating items to Animal rescue groups, electronics to Goodwill, homeless shelters, and other organizations.
Who has been your biggest advocate?
I am fortunate to have great neighbors that tolerate my beach trash house, the piles of beach trash being sorted, the piles of textiles drying in the back, and back in the day a yard of beach trash art. Judy Yoakum, has been fantastic in washing shoes and other items and will take to wash reusable bottles in her dishwasher. There are some homeless who also have helped by salvaging towels and clothing to leave for me, some who actually help me in picking up trash. Jean Froning who bought me a new wagon, Otis (her husband) who also picks up trash, the Dawn Patrol (morning surfers at the jetty) have been great, Katy (Scripps Ranch) Bob (Mission Hills) Richard (homeless) Jane Williams (Dover CT) Vicki and Roy (fisherman) Dennis and John (Metal detectors) Andy Chotiner (MBTC) my sister who holds garage sales for me to sell to pay for the laundromat, Randals Sandals, Aaron Null of the Street Stewards group, Leslie Dufour (PB) The Felices and of course all the Park and Recreation staff who are mostly great.
There are so many others who have encouraged me in my pursuit of clean beaches.
Who has been your biggest obstacle?
We residents pay thousands of dollars a year to keep our beaches clean. A study in 2010 reveals the cost to clean our beaches in San Diego was $1,301,000. Clean beaches bring tourists. Clean beaches keep people healthy.
Thousands of dollars daily are wasted on the beach. All the toys, food, clothes, shoes, towels, tents, chairs, furniture, beer, blankets, socks, hats, cannabis, umbrellas, cellphones, backpacks, electronics, left on the beach add up to thousands of dollars wasted. I've estimated, just in the South Mission Beach oceanfront alone, it is a minimum of waste at $200 a day.