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  • Writer's pictureTony Felice




September 12th - 7am - Belmont Park

MISSION BEACH, Calif. (Sept. 5, 2020)--a newly formed citizen advocacy group Don't Trash Mission Beach ( announced a Beach Cleanup for South Mission Beach along with a Beach Trash Art exhibit- installation to bring awareness of beach trash and its impact on the environment. 

The advocacy promotes 'Pack It In and Pack It Out' along with personal responsibility and hopes that a community - visitor trash awareness campaign can precipitate change for Mission Beach. 

The event is presented by Don't Trash Mission Beach, Friends of Beautiful Mission Beach, and is sponsored by Belmont Park, The Felice Agency, Olive Baking Company, and ScootScoop. In addition, Pacific Beach Town Council and The Mighty Bin, a Zero Waste store, will be in attendance. 

The event will occur during Coastal Clean-Up Month and National Cleanup Day. It will be held on Sept. 12 at Belmont Park on the Boardwalk south of the roller coaster. 

The beach cleanup will begin at 7:30 am when volunteers will meet at the park and clean the beach and surrounding area until 11:30 am. Bags, gloves, grabbers and Sanitizers will be provided. Everyone will wear masks and observe social distancing. 

The Beach Art-Trash Exhibit will showcase 7 am until 5:00 pm. The display will feature rescued items such as hundreds of shoes, towels, toys, and personal items. In addition, tens of thousands of items like bottle caps, cigarette lighters, vaping materials, and other items carelessly left behind or purposefully left on the beach every day. 

  The sheer amount of recyclable, salvageable items rescued from the beach in South Mission is staggering. The estimated retail value of items in 2020 is more than $10,000, bringing to light the disposable society's mindset. The Beach-Trash-Art installation will be on display from 7 am to 5 pm the day of the cleanup.

Anyone interested in volunteering for either event should email the organizers at

For a behind-the-scenes look at the volume of items collected, some of which will be on display, see two videos below.

Don't Trash Mission Beach was formed by three residents Cathy Ives and Tony and Tim Sanfelice. The Sanfelice's recently joined Ives, who has been combing the beach every day first thing in the morning for the last decade. She has been the subject of several news stories, and the Sanfelice's who own the Felice Agency ( were so taken with her efforts, they joined in earlier in the year to help with the monumental task of picking up trash. Since January, Cathy alone has rescued and picked up more than 70,000 items salvaged for recycling, repurposing, or art installation purposes. Some stats are below. She spends two to four hours a week at the laundromat washing materials for later donation to charities in neighboring communities.

"Tim and I started picking up trash on our own after seeing so much of it carelessly left by people on the sand, near the shoreline, in the jetty and in the park. After a while, we kept hearing the name Cathy Ives. We reached out to her and when we heard her story, we were blown away by her commitment to the community and decided to help out but also to bring the experience of our branding and marketing company to amplify her voice and turn her passion into a movement," said Tony Sanfelice.

Using a tracking app available on Apple and Android by NOAA, the Marine Debris Tracker, Ives uses the list created by the Ocean Conservancy to track each item on a daily basis.

"I have been a beach trash advocate for over ten years, said Ives. I started blogging about this in 2008," said Ives.

"In the last three years, I have picked up over three tons of trash just in South Mission. Fortunately, both Tim and Tony, who also pick up trash, decided that a larger campaign was in order, and the three of us decided to launch Don't Trash Mission Beach. This coincides with PB Trash Pickers and PB Street Stewards, OB Street Stewards, and other beach trash advocates. We are all sick of the trashing of our neighborhoods, and so we thought we could raise awareness and advocate for change if we put our heads together."

For more information about the event, visit or email the organizers at

About Don’t Trash Mission Beach

Don't Trash Mission Beach is a small group of volunteers who comb South Mission Beach in San Diego on a daily basis to pick up trash left every day on the shoreline, sand, boardwalks, sidewalks, streets and parks. The average daily amount of trash picked up is around 500 pounds. Three tons of trash has been picked up (much of it rescued from landfills) and either discarded appropriately or recycled, upcycled or cleaned and donated to charity. More than fifty-three thousand items were collected between January and September 2020. The group was formed to bring awareness and education around the hazards of beach trash and to foster a sense of pride in the community and to advocate for personal responsibility and education through beach cleanup events and art installations. In addition, the group promotes a Court Adoption Program where members of the community can sign up as stewards for their streets. The group was formed by residents Cathy Ives and Tim and Tony Sanfelice. For more information, visit


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