Volunteers scour Willamette River for trash

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EUGENE, Ore. - The Willamette River drains the Cascade and Coastal mountains north from Eugene to Portland, where the river joins the Columbia and rolls on to Astoria and the sea.

Hundreds of people in the Willamette Valley lent a hand on a sunny fall Saturday to clean up 191 river miles.

"Hikers come through and joggers, bikers, and you know it's a great opportunity to be, you know, have a stake in community beauty and the welfare of the park," said volunteer Thomas Weaver, who chipped in along Eugene's waterfront.

Willamette Riverkeeper helped organize the 5th annual cleanup along 191 river miles.

Dave Villalobos said 800 people participated.

"It's the heart, it's one of the major rivers within our state," he said. "It's an awesome opportunity to get tons of folks together to come in and pull stuff out of the river that shouldn't be."

Villalobos said crews on boat pulled trash from the river while volunteers on land scoured the banks looking for anything that shouldn't be there.