SPLASH and Scouts clean local waters


The Scouts of Long Beach’s Troop 215, along with Scouts from Troop 20 in Five Towns, spent the morning of May 11 cleaning up the nearby waters, pulling 270 pounds of trash out of the bay.  

Joining a crew from Operation SPLASH, a Freeport-based nonprofit, the scouts tackled the shore of Pearsall’s Hassock, which is the second “island” west of the Costco located in nearby Oceanside. The morning began with Long Beach resident, Captain Scott McDonnell, and Frank Trumm of Operation SPLASH ferrying the scouts and their leaders from the Bay Park Ramp to Pearsall’s Hassock.  

After a short safety discussion, it was time to work. The scouts were handed gloves, garbage reach-and-grab sticks and a five-gallon bucket. As they approached the hassock, the amount of trash on the shore that needed cleaning became quickly apparent.  The amount was somewhat disconcerting. 

From a distance, the scouts initially thought, “there is not much here, we can do this island quickly.” After the boat was grounded and the scouts disembarked, they realized the magnitude of the project was much more than they initially thought.

Without any hesitation, they hopped onto shore and headed north — and south — along the shoreline, filling their five-gallon buckets. Soon realizing that their buckets were too small and filling up quickly, they made multiple hikes back to the staging area to empty them into larger buckets, which the Operation SPLASH team ferried back to the boat ramp. 

The troop was shocked by what they found on the shore: water bottles, action figures, Styrofoam, rubber hoses and backyard chairs, and some even found car parts. The car parts are in the marshes as a result of a barge that sank near the Costco last year.  The scouts joked that if they stayed longer they may have been able to make a full car.

Operation SPLASH volunteers patrol the South Shore bays and waterways removing debris, both large and small. SPLASH cleanup trips launch from different locations along the southern shore of Nassau County, which means you’re never too far from a crew that could use your help. For more information on how to help, visit OperationSplash.com,

The mission of the Boy Scouts of America is to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes, by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law.  To learn more about Troop 215 or scouts in general, visit BeAScout.org.