NewsLocal NewsCharlotte County


PG Islanders spearhead annual Canal Cleanup Day

Posted at 5:49 AM, Mar 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-04 10:00:48-05

PUNTA GORDA, Fla. — The PG Islanders Sailing Club will be making the city’s water a little cleaner thanks to a special effort.

It’s part of their annual ‘Canal Cleanup Day’ and it gets underway Saturday.

"It’s not a job, it’s just a lot of fun to go out and do it," says Joe Obrien, Event Coordinator for Punta Gorda Canal Cleanup. “We cruise these canals everyday, whether you’re out sailing or happy hour cruise or heading out for fishing, you’re always going out. You take your friends out there and you want it to look nice and it’s a great way to give back to the community.”

Obrien is with the PG Islanders, a local group dedicated to helping make the waters clean. Their annual ‘Canal Cleanup’ has been an annual tradition since 2004— the same year that brought Hurricane Charley.

"There was a lot of debris after Charley, as you can imagine," he says. "Every year sometimes you have a lot of debris, some years you don’t have much. It at least keeps everyone involved and cleaning up.”

This Saturday, Joe and others will be cruising thru Punta Gorda’s canals. Helping make them clean one net swoop at a time.

"We are part of a community," says Sue Linehan, New Commodore of PG Islanders. "We are not just the PG Islanders and it is our job to make boating something everyone can enjoy.”

And it’s that same message the Islanders want to share so that maybe other communities across Southwest Florida adopt a similar attitude.

"We are trying to outreach into the community and help make this a better cruising community overall,” she says.

Saturday’s clean up will be entirely voluntary. But the effects its having can be seen already in their very own backyard.

"Another canal area not too far from us, they called us to help out here," said Obrien. "I was like, ‘Well why don’t you do your section over in your canal system over on Burnt Store?’ And I said come to our luncheon and we’ll talk about maybe getting you guys started on your own group. We’ll show you what we do and hopefully that will carry on and this will be able to spread to Cape Coral, Fort Myers- all these places.”

If you’d like to participate in Saturday’s Canal Cleanup, you can find more information online right here.