Take Pride in Smith Mountain Lake will celebrate its 30th year of helping to keep SML beautiful with a season-long cleanup initiative beginning May 6.
“Last year, we successfully transitioned from a one-day event to an opportunity for residents and visitors to choose any day during the summer season to clean up the shoreline, lake or both, “ said Vicki Gardner, Executive Director of the SML Regional Chamber of Commerce.
“The feedback was positive. Participants appreciated being able to choose a day that worked best for their particular group or neighborhood, as opposed to being locked into a specific day,” Gardner said. “It also allowed for easy rescheduling if the weather didn’t cooperate. Participants were enthusiastic and collected nearly 13 tons of debris, which we’re absolutely thrilled about.”
This year, Take Pride in SML will take place between May 6 and Sept. 4. Participants – which can be individuals, families, neighbors, subdivisions, organizations and vacationers – are encouraged to register by June 30.
Take Pride in SML is a joint venture of the Chamber, Smith Mountain Lake Association (SMLA) and Tri-County Lakes Administrative Commission (TLAC). The organizers provide groups registered by June 30 with gloves, trash bags and commemorative T-shirts (while supplies last).
Beginning two weeks prior to a group’s registered event, a representative may pick up the supplies on Tuesday or Friday at the SMLA office (lower level of The Plaza, 400 Scruggs Road, Suite 200, Moneta). Following the event, each group will provide a trash collection report. That data will be compiled with details released in September.
Said SMLA President Lorie Smith, “Advocating for a safe and healthy lake environment is the SMLA’s primary mission, and that requires continuous effort by all who use the lake. Take Pride is an amazing SML tradition that contributes to this important goal, and we’re confident this 30th anniversary initiative will be the best yet.”
A list of groups and scheduled events will be available on the TLAC website. Also available online are forms for registration, trash collection reporting and dumpster/landfill cost reimbursement.
TPISML will continue to offer reimbursement of a limited number of dumpster and landfill fees (up to $400) to assist large, on-the-water group cleanup events. Businesses, including marinas, may also apply for dumpster/landfill reimbursement fees through the program. Guidelines are included on the form.
Take Pride in Smith Mountain Lake will promote events all summer long via social media with participants encouraged to post photos of their cleanup efforts on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #TakePrideSML.
Take Pride in Smith Mountain Lake sponsors include:
DIAMOND: American Electric Power
PLATINUM: Western Virginia Water Authority
The Windward Waterfront Lots and Custom Homes
For more information or to inquire about sponsorship, contact TLAC (540-721-4400) or the SML Regional Chamber of Commerce (540-721-1203).