A series of volunteer opportunities in honor of the 2022 MLK Day of Service sponsored by Montgomery Parks will include stream and park cleanups throughout the County. The events are scheduled between Saturday, Jan. 15, and Saturday, Jan. 22.
Group-led volunteer opportunities will include removing trash or non-native invasive plants at various parks and trails throughout the County. Advanced registration is required to participate. Register at the Volunteer Services website.
All volunteers ages 5 and up must be fully vaccinated and provide their COVID-19 vaccination record to participate. Projects are outdoors, so participants should dress appropriately for the weather. The projects are approved for Student Service Learning (SSL) hours. Volunteers under 14 must be accompanied by an adult.
The scheduled activities include:
- Matthew Henson Trail – Saturday, Jan. 15. Noon-2 p.m.
- Fairland Recreation Park – Sunday, Jan. 16. 1-3 p.m.
- Black Hill Regional Park – Monday, Jan. 17. 1-3 p.m.
- Matthew Henson Trail with Rock Creek Conservancy – Monday, Jan. 17. 10 a.m.-noon
- New Hampshire Estates with Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection, CHEER and Linkages to Learning – Monday, Jan. 17. Noon-2 p.m.
- Takoma-Piney Branch Local Park – Monday, Jan. 17. 10 a.m.-noon.
- Locust Grove Nature Center – Monday, Jan. 17. 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
- Sligo Mill Nature Conservation Area – Saturday, Jan. 22. Noon-2 p.m.
- Little Falls Stream Valley Park – Saturday, Jan. 15. 1-3 p.m.
- Rock Creek Stream Valley Park – Sunday, Jan. 16. 1-3 p.m.
- Westmoreland Hills Local Park – Sunday, Jan. 16. 1-3 p.m.
- Sligo Creek Parkway – Monday, Jan. 17. 9-11 a.m.
- Reddy Branch Stream Valley Park – Monday, Jan. 17 Noon-3 p.m.
- Little Falls Stream Valley Park – Monday, Jan. 17. 1-3 p.m.
- Rock Creek Stream Valley Park – Wednesday, Jan. 19. 1-3 p.m.
In addition to the group-led clean-ups, individuals can participate in a self-guided, week-long MLK Plogging Challenge, a community-wide effort supported by Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection and One Montgomery Green to pick up trash while walking or jogging.
Montgomery Parks began organizing MLK Day of Service cleanups in 2012. Over the past 10 years, 2,723 volunteers have removed more than 49.2 tons of trash and recyclables from parkland. In a typical year, Montgomery Parks’ Volunteer Services Office manages 5,000 volunteers across 250 organized cleanups resulting in about 62 tons of trash and recyclables removed from parkland annually.