When Shenandoah Riverkeeper’s Alan Lehman contacted Friends to report a concentration of tires in the North Fork along the Red Banks Road in Mount Jackson, we knew exactly who to call. Donnie Cochran and his amazing crew at Virginia Eagle Distributing Company have helped us collect large tire deposits in the past, and were ready to spring into action again!
Undeterred by the summer sun, heat, and dense vegetation, 23 Virginia Eagle employees joined Donnie, Shenandoah Riverkeepers Alan Lehman and Mark Frondorf, and Friends’ executive director David Brotman, on July 18th to pull a staggering 111 tires out of the North Fork. The tires were loaded up on a dump truck graciously provided by a VA Eagle volunteer and taken to the Shenandoah County Landfill, where they are no longer leaching harmful oil-based chemicals and heavy metals into our community’s waterways.
After the tires were loaded up, the crew relaxed over well-deserved cold brews and sandwiches while Donnie raffled off a kayak, generously donated to Virginia Eagle by Sweetwater Brewing Company for this event, along with a few other items.
A big thank you to the crew at Virginia Eagle Distributing Company and the Shenandoah Riverkeepers, without whom this important project would not have been possible. Friends would also like to acknowledge the landowner, Todd Bowman, who gave us his trust and support in allowing us to access the site via his property. Here’s what he had to say about his experience:
“Working with the team from Friends of the North Fork of the Shenandoah River was both a pleasure and an honor. Not only were Dave Brotman and his team exceptionally thorough in communicating their plans for the river clean-up, they also went out of their way to minimize impacts to the property. This organization provides an invaluable service for the Shenandoah Valley, supporting the quality of life in the community while protecting the health of the river and its environs. I commend them for their efforts and would be proud to partner with them again.”– Todd Bowman, property owner
This event shows just how much can be accomplished when engaged local businesses, motivated citizens, and conservation non-profits team up to clean up in and around our watershed.