The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission is hosting a volunteer clean-up day at Fremont Lakes State Recreation Area this weekend after flooding devastated the area in March.
The volunteer clean-up day at the lakes will be held from 9 a.m. to noon on April 27, where volunteers will be enlisted to provide assistance in the NGPC efforts to re-open the area as soon as possible.
“A lot of it is going to be general park clean up,” Park Superintendent Bill Booth said. “There’s a lot of litter around, and sticks and other debris all over the beaches.”
NGPC officials have said they hope to re-open at least portions of the Fremont Lakes SRA area to the public by May 1.
Following flooding throughout eastern Nebraska last month, the NGPC began receiving offers for help from volunteers from all over. That led to the commission setting up a webpage for volunteer signup.
The NGPC held its first volunteer effort on April 13 at Louisville State Recreation Area where 75 volunteers painted and renovated hundreds of picnic tables, picked up trash and prepared the main office for new interior walls and counters.
Response to the planned Fremont Lakes clean-up has already been swift as hundreds of Boy Scouts are already slated to assist in raking trash and debris from beaches, while other volunteers will remove trash and debris, move picnic tables and replant planters on April 27.
Those interested in volunteering are encouraged to sign up online at outdoornebraska.gov/volunteerform/ or by calling 402-471-0641.
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Volunteers can also sign up on the day of the event.
All volunteers are asked to enter the Fremont Lakes SRA through the west entrance and make their way to the ranger station/office building.
According to Booth, those who sign up online can also print out the online registration form, fill it out, and bring it along to help expedite the registration process.
“Make sure to check in and go through the proper procedures and we’ll get to work and try to have a little fun while we are doing it,” he said.
He also encouraged volunteers to show up a little bit early to help the registration process go more quickly, before groups of volunteers are sent out into the park to begin clean-up.
“We’ll get separated in to groups and try to attack the south area of the park and we’ll try to get as much as we can done,” he said.
Volunteers are also reminded to dress appropriately — with close-toed shoes and long pants preferably — and to only enter the park through the west entrance off of County Road 19 as Fremont Lakes remains closed to the general public.
A full list of WMA and park closures due to flooding, can be found online at outdoornebraska.gov/weatherclosures.