The Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research and Preservation is urging Long Islanders to pick it up — everything from discarded fishing nets to food wrappers that wash up on local beaches.
The foundation’s Pick It Up initiative, which begins Saturday with a 2 p.m. Fire Island National Seashore beach cleanup event, seeks to raise awareness of the damage that beach debris can do to marine animals and how humans can help stop it.
The program will offer both beach cleanups and lectures to educate Long Islanders throughout the spring and into the summer.
The volunteer sites for Saturday’s cleanup will include Roanoke Beach, Fire Island, Crab Meadow Beach Park in Huntington, Cedar Beach in Mount Sinai and Ponquogue Beach in Hampton Bays.
Officials said they have additional cleanups planned for March 5, April 2 and May 7 from 10 a.m. to noon and the foundation is open to recommendations of other sites for future cleanups.
There’s no cost to register; interested volunteers can sign up at the foundation’s center in Riverhead by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 631-369-9840.
Foundation officials are also asking beachgoers to think about minimizing waste and share their cleanup efforts online.