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Government shutdown affects only GINS portion of Mississippi Coastal Cleanup

BILOXI, Miss. – Due to the government shutdown, all national parks including Gulf Islands National Seashore (GINS) are closed. Therefore, Gulf Islands National Seashore—which includes Cat, West and East Ship, Horn, Petit Bois and Sand islands, as well as Davis Bayou—will not be participating in the Mississippi Coastal Cleanup scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 19.

GINS volunteers are encouraged to visit www.mscoastalcleanup.org or go to www.facebook.com/mscoastalcleanup for a complete list of cleanup sites and to download a registration form, which they can bring with them on Saturday and turn in at their selected site. All of the remaining sites in Hancock, Harrison and Jackson counties as well as Deer Island will be open and participating in the Oct. 19 Mississippi Coastal Cleanup.

"It's unfortunate the islands will be unavailable for cleanup this weekend, but we will not let it dampen our enthusiasm to clean up the other areas of the Coast," said Jamie Miller, executive director of the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources.

"The more than 200 boaters and other volunteers who had signed up to clean the barrier islands or Davis Bayou have been contacted via email and invited to participate at any of the more than 60 other designated Coastal Cleanup sites," said Lauren Thompson, MDMR public relations manager and state coordinator for the Mississippi Coastal Cleanup. "I am grateful to all of our volunteers and hope that those affected by the government shutdown will not allow that to diminish their volunteer spirit and that they will still come out and join us on Saturday, rain or shine."

For those who still want to participate by boat, extra supplies will be available at the check-in table between the boat launch and the pier at the harbor end of Front Beach in Ocean Springs and at the check-in table at the boat launch at the Biloxi Small Craft Harbor for volunteers interested in cleaning Deer Island. For more information call 228-380-5907 or 228-324-9292.

The Mississippi Coastal Cleanup is a joint effort of the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources and the Mississippi Marine Debris Task Force.

The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources is dedicated to enhancing, protecting and conserving marine interests of the state by managing all marine life, public trust wetlands, adjacent uplands and waterfront areas to provide for the optimal commercial, recreational, educational and economic uses of these resources consistent with environmental concerns and social changes. Visit the DMR online at www.dmr.ms.gov

Lauren Thompson
Phone: 228-523-4053

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