SAN BENITO — What began as an attempt at having a successful father and son fishing trip turned into a full-fledged effort to clean as many Valley fishing areas and waterways as possible.
From tires to a recliner and even Christmas ornaments, Richard Hitchcox, founder and managing director of RGV Fishing Area and Waterway Cleanups, said he’s seen the product of a lot of illegal dumping in fishing areas.
And after seeing that many trash-filled spots were “very dirty and nasty” to fish in, he began to start tidying them up, one cleanup at a time.
The RGV Fishing Area and Waterway Cleanups nonprofit organization is seeking volunteers for its next cleanup slated for Saturday, July 20 from 8:30 a.m. to noon at Low Water Bridge in San Benito, where Cemetery Road crosses the Arroyo Colorado.
Cleanup supplies such as gloves and trash bags along with sunscreen, insect repellent and water will be provided to volunteers.
Hitchcox said he will sign community service forms for kids who volunteer.
“We encourage kids to volunteer,” he said. “It’s a good way for them to do something for the community and also accumulate service hours.”
In addition to needing more volunteers, RGV Fishing Area and Waterway Cleanups’ personnel are seeking sponsorships.
As a way to say thank you to volunteers and encourage more to lend a helping hand at future cleanups, Hitchcox said he tries to give prizes to as many volunteers as possible through raffles.
A community-wide impact
Hitchcox said his organization aims to help fishing areas and waterways in the “entire Valley.”
Since last year, the organization has completed cleanups in other popular Valley fishing spots, such as Gayman Bridge, Pedritas Bridge and Mercedes Waterfalls.
“Through these cleanups, my son and I have found a lot of new places we can go fishing,” Hitchcox said. “Overall, it makes you feel good to go and do something for the community.”
IF YOU GO
WHAT — Low Water Bridge Cleanup
WHEN — Saturday, July 20, from 8:30 a.m. to noon
WHERE — Low Water Bridge in San Benito, where Cemetery Road crosses the Arroyo Colorado
To become a sponsor, contact Richard Hitchcox at (956) 371-7146.