National clean parks movement comes to Shawnee National Forest - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

National clean parks movement comes to Shawnee National Forest

(Source: KFVS) (Source: KFVS)
HARRISBURG, IL (KFVS) -

The Shawnee National Forest is getting some help to clean up the park. The Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics and its Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers will host a community cleanup event August 27-28 at the Garden of the Gods Recreation Area. 

The Hot Spot Program aims to raise awareness in popular nature areas where more visitors can lead to more trash. The Subaru/ Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers will educate the community on how to take good care of the outdoors, before holding a clean-up day. 

Some tips for taking care of nature are below:

  • Trash your trash: Put litter (including crumbs, peels, and cores) into garbage bags and dispose of them in trash cans. Extra food can damage wildlife. It takes up to two years for orange or banana peels to decompose in nature, more than 10 years for plastic bags, and more than 80 years for aluminum cans.
  • Clean up after your pet: Even dog waste can be harmful to the natural environment or spread disease. Always pick it up and dispose of it in garbage cans.
  • Take only pictures, leave only footprints: According to the U.S. National Park Service, Americans logged 1.6 billions visits to national and state parks in 2015. They strongly encourage tourists not to take anything from those lands.
  • Keep wildlife wild: Do not feed human food to any wild animals.
  • Refuse the makeover: When you leave a campsite, it should look as though you were never there.

For more information on the clean up event, visit the Shawnee National Forest's website by clicking here.

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