Celebrating Our Water
Clean water matters. What flows downstream and through our rivers affects our livelihood, wildlife and environment. The City of Dublin is pleased to host an annual river cleanup to raise awareness about and make important contributions to the overall health of the beautiful Scioto River. Each year, residents, families and groups come to Scioto Park to pay homage to the importance of clean waterways by volunteering their time to conduct a river cleanup.
The Scioto River
This great river is more than 230 miles long starting in Auglaize County, meeting the Ohio River near Portsmouth. Early inhabitants of Ohio used the river as a main transportation thoroughfare and in the late 19th century, it provided a main route to freedom for slaves escaping from the South. Today, it is used as a source for drinking water in central Ohio and is host to more than 115 known species of fish. Residents and visitors use the river for bird watching, canoeing or kayaking, fishing and general relaxation.
The Annual “Mike Utt Scioto River Cleanup”
Although the City hosts other river cleanups and water quality monitoring during the year, this annual event is held the third Saturday of every August to remember a great champion of clean waterways, Mike Utt. Mike, who passed away unexpectedly in 2005, was a community volunteer who encouraged city organizers to begin to host such volunteer engagement. His family, all of whom live out of town, still come to Dublin for this day to pay homage to what he got started for this community and the Scioto River.
How the day is organized
- Volunteers must register here
- Once the registration process steps are complete, volunteers are sent confirmation details.
- All volunteers gather at a central point to begin the project for a brief education session and training overview.
- Teams then leave the site and split into five access points along the river.
- One team leader is assigned per team.
- Residents living along the areas being cleaned are notified that volunteers will be conducting the river cleanup.
- If water levels are appropriate, teams may bring their own canoes to launch and use.
- Trash and debris is collected in different trash bags, separated into trash and recyclable materials.
- All debris too large or too heavy to collect is reported to a central location.
- The City provides gloves (for those who need them), trash bags, skin solutions* and onsite supervision.
- A (call in) Volunteer Information Line is provided that morning in case of inclement weather. Rain will not cancel the event, but lightning and high wind will cancel it. There is no rain date for this event.
- *Note: There is some poison oak and ivy along this river. Those who experience allergic reactions to these plants should either not participate, or make it known so that another cleanup activity in parks may be arranged.
2021 Scioto River Cleanup Details
Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021
9 a.m. – Noon
Central Meeting Point
Scioto Park, 7377 Riverside Dr.
Rain will not cancel this event. High winds and/or lightning will. There is no rain date for this event.
614.410.4753 (This is an Info Line recorded that morning ONLY which will provide weather updates in case of any delay or cancellation)
MUST wear sturdy shoes. No flip flops or bare feet. Bring heavy duty gloves if you have them. If not, we will provide them.
Exposure to elements
There is poison oak and ivy along the banks of the river. If you are severely allergic, please do not participate. We do provide skin solutions to put on skin prior to exposure.
Bring your own water bottle and arrive well-nourished and hydrated. We will provide some light refreshments and water on site as well.
There is a possibility that volunteers may be on private property along some bank areas of the river. DO NOT clean any area other than what is in the river or along the bank. In some cases, property owners may have “Keep Out” signs or a visual cue indicating you are not to go on their property. Please respect their wishes by leaving their property untouched.
City of Dublin Outreach & Engagement
6555 Shier Rings Road
Dublin OH 43016