Headed to the beach for the July 4th holiday? You’ll be glad to know that all Hampton Roads beaches are open and safe for swimming! You can check on the status of your favorite Commonwealth beaches by visiting the state’s beach monitoring site.
While enjoying the surf and sand, be sure to keep our beaches clean and green by practicing these simple suggestions:
- No litter left behind– And that includes cigarette butts. Pack a litter free picnic, recycle everything you can or bring reusable containers and utensils. Maybe even pick up any litter you see and leave the beach better than you found it. Cloth napkins aren’t such a hassle–you’ve gotta wash those beach towels anyway. Throw ‘em in together and make it a water wise load of laundry!
- Scoop the Poop! Many localities don’t even allow pets on the beach, but when nature calls, those nutrients can end up in area waterways if not picked up and put in the trash. Take a couple of plastic bags from your newspapers or recent shopping trip and puts those bags to a good reuse while walking Fido or Fifi.
- Leave only footprints, take only photos–this classic refrain in natural areas is a good rule of thumb. Follow marked paths to beach access where applicable, avoiding sensitive sand dunes and other habitat that provide food and shelter for wildlife. Leave what you find where you found it. Snap a picture and leave the shells, rocks, plants and wildlife for the next beachcomber to enjoy!
We all love the beach and coastal areas–we wouldn’t live in Hampton Roads if we didn’t–so do your part to keep our waters safe for fishing, swimming and playing. Enjoy a safe and happy holiday weekend and declare your independence from pollution!