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Volunteers who cleaned up after the July 4 holiday scooped up 4,000 pounds of trash from six area beaches, according to the Surfrider Foundation’s local chapter.

That’s an improvement from last year, when volunteers picked up 9,000 pounds of left-over litter. (The same number of volunteers, 1,000, came out this year and last year.)

The beach cleaner-uppers also dug 28,000 cigarette butts out of the sand this year, up from the 20,000 they found last year.

I wondered whether volunteers counted as they went or whether there’s a designated cigarette-butt counter, so I called Bill Hickman, a spokesman for Surfrider’s local chapter. He said volunteers tallied as they went. But he liked the idea of putting all the butts into one pile. “That’d be a great visual,” he said.


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