Frequently Asked Questions

Russian River Watershed Cleanup – FAQ’s (PDF)

Do I need to complete a Release Agreement?
All participants in the Annual Russian River Watershed Cleanup Event must complete, print out, and bring the following documents on the day of the event: Release of Liability

NOTE-If you are volunteering on the river, you will need to sign an additional waiver from the boat providers.

What should I wear to a river cleanup?
River cleanups can be messy and require hard work. Wear clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty or tattered. Work boots and durable, heavy-duty work gloves are strongly recommended. We do provide each participant with gloves; however, it is advisable to bring an extra pair. If you are going to be working in the water, dress appropriately. Long sleeved shirts and long pants are recommended for the protection they provide against the sun, poisonous or thorny plants and biting insects. Wearing a hat and eye protection is also recommended. Apply sunscreen to unprotected areas of your skin to avoid sun exposure.

What else should I bring to a river cleanup?
Stay hydrated! Bring plenty of water and lunch or snacks to keep your energy up. Make sure to print your release agreement and waivers, and bring them with you too.

Is lunch provided? No, lunch is not provided. We will have some snacks to get you going in the morning.
Will restrooms be nearby? Yes, there will be restrooms at the sign-up locations in the morning and/or at the closest Sonoma County Regional River Park. Make sure you get your free county park day pass upon leaving the signup area so that you can enter the River Park nearest you if you need to use their facilities.

Can my kids participate?
Kids are absolutely welcome to beach and trail cleanups. Beach cleanups are a fun learning experience for kids. The safety of beach and trial cleanup participants under the age of 18 is the responsibility of parents or legal guardians.

Why are you holding the cleanup in the fall and not the spring?
After Labor Day, the busy part of the recreation and paddling season has come to an end. We conduct cleanups in the fall to make sure no trash has been left in the environment. We clean up as much as we can before the winter rains begin, so the trash does not float to the ocean or harm wildlife.

What happens in the case of bad weather?
The river cleanup will go on rain or shine. Updates on the weather forecast can be found by visiting The National Weather Service site.

You can check the Cleanup page for any updates during the week of the cleanup:

What happens if I find something that won’t fit in my canoe? Or is too large to pick up?
SAFETY FIRST. If it’s too big or too heavy do not pick it up. If you find something that is too large to fit in your canoe, or that requires more than two people, find your team leader and they will make a note of its location for pickup at the end of the cleanup.

I have my own canoe or kayak, or I would prefer to pickup garbage in an area near a creek or along the Russian River that is not listed on the cleanup web site, can I bring trash to the drop off locations?
YES, with advanced arrangements. Please contact or call (707) 433-1958

NOTE: You must fill out an additional waiver if you are participating in the cleanup and will be in your own watercraft.

Help clean up our river with the Russian River Watershed Cleanup!