Clean sweep: Hundreds turn out to spruce up Jamaica Bay

Clean sweep: Hundreds turn out to spruce up Jamaica Bay
HEAVY LIFTING: Mike Bruno of Cub Scout Pack 376 — which is based out of Our Lady of Grace Church in Gravesend — clears away some of the debris found along Floyd Bennett Field’s shoreline on Oct. 15.
Steve Solomonson

Floyd Bennett Field’s shoreline got a much needed sprucing up on Oct. 15 as boy and cub scout troops from throughout Brooklyn were turned into environmental warriors.

After sleeping under the stars at Floyd Bennett Field’s new campgrounds, more than 600 children joined the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation and the National Parks Service in cleaning up Jamaica Bay’s shoreline inside both Floyd Bennett Field and Marine Park.

The goal of the clean up, dubbed the Great Urban Outdoor Event, was to inspire young children to not only enjoy the outdoors but to open their eyes to green career opportunities, Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe explained.

“Introducing kids to green jobs puts them on the path to long-term careers and fosters a strong commitment to improving the environment,” Benepe explained. “This event represents a shared commitment to engage, educate, and employ young New Yorkers by taking advantage of the city’s natural resources.”

After camping out in Floyd Bennett Field on Friday night, children were led through a host of activities around Jamaica Bay that included a large coastal clean up and native planting.

Through it all, city and National Park Service rangers, foresters, gardeners and administrators explained what they did and “engaged children in dialogue about the ways environmental stewardship can sustain our urban metropolis,” Benepe said.

A FAMILY AFFAIR: Little Ethan Bono of Marine Park’s Cub Scout Pack 353 helps his dad James Bono clean Floyd Bennett Field’s shoreline on Saturday.

Steve Solomonson

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