To the editor:
On April 21, the friends of Gloucester Dog Park set out to clean three highly used dog walking areas in the city.
What we found makes it hard to write a message that doesn't sound self-righteous and preachy, so we'll stick to the facts and let you make your own conclusions.
Good Harbor Beach, by the numbers:
25-plus trash bags were filled.
Four bags were filled with recyclables.
30-plus filled dog poop bags.
20-plus piles of dog poop piles not bagged.
Three diapers buried on beach — and, unfortunately, a significant amount of human waste in the dunes.
40-plus lottery tickets found on the roadside (to that particular litterbug; perhaps you should find another hobby, clearly you are spending way too much money soiling our roadside and marsh).
Here's a reminder to all: At Good Harbor Beach, and all city beaches, the rule is if you carry it in, you need to carry it out — and that includes your dog waste.
Goose Cove Reservoir, by the numbers: While there was a surprising lack of "trash" on the loop (as opposed to the parking area), the dog park team picked up an estimated 50 pounds of dog waste, including 30-plus owner-bagged poops that had been tossed into the woods.
Goose Cove Reservoir is just that — a public drinking water supply reservoir. The bacteria in dog waste, whether left on the path or in the woods, will make its way down hill and into the water.
The city of Gloucester water quality office has posted a sign requesting that everyone be responsible. Irresponsible dog walkers may well cause the city to close this area to all. What a shame that would be.
Finally, Stacy Boulevard by the numbers:
1 bag of trash filled.
1 bag of poop.
It was not as bad as we expected, but it could be better!
So, there are the facts.
The conclusion we draw from this is that most residents of Gloucester take care of their local environs.
To the few that do not, we ask that you show more pride in your city and pick it up and dispose of it properly!
The soon to be Gloucester Dog Park will work on the same rules — carry in, carry out.
MARIE DEMICK, LOUISE GRINDROD and the Gloucester Dog Park Earth Day volunteers