Blogs > Ecology > Why I Sweep: A chance to “Give Back’

Why I Sweep: A chance to “Give Back’


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This is one in a series of guest blog posts about Riverkeeper Sweep, our annual day of service for the Hudson, involving dozens of shoreline cleanups and planting projects on a single day. Be part of the next Sweep, October 17, 2020 – Visit


I was very excited to hear about the Riverkeeper Sweep, coming up Saturday, October 17. Not only am I lucky enough to live in a hamlet that the Hudson passes, I also work here. Riverkeeper Sweep seemed like a natural event for the library where I serve as director, the Morton Memorial Library & Community House. I also belong to the Rhinebeck Grange and a local sustainability group, Backyard to Table. All three groups decided to collaborate. When Sweep was rescheduled from the original May date to October 17, it was a wonderful bit of luck, since that was also the day of The Great Give Back.

During The Great Give Back (GGB), libraries from all over New York State connect patrons with opportunities to help their neighbors through donation drives, environmental cleanup events and other community service projects. Libraries are catalysts and conveners, working to respond to the needs of the people in the community, and The Great Give Back gives us a chance to shine a light on this work and connect more people with what’s going on at their local library.

It feels like the Hudson gives so much to our community: a place for reflection, a place for sport, a viewshed, a destination; that the very least that we can do is give something back.

Our community is wonderful about banding together for good causes. We look forward to tidying along the Hudson, focusing on the Rhinecliff Dock area. We hope to not only clean up, but also to do some plantings. We will focus on pollinator plants, which are not only beautiful but helpful to the bees and insects.

And though we will all be cleaning up the Hudson, it is still doing more for us. In this time of social isolating, the Riverkeeper Sweep along the Hudson will give us a chance to be together, work together, and be social – albeit in a slightly distanced fashion.

The Hudson River really is the lifeblood of our community.

Learn more about the Rhinecliff Dock Cleanup happening as part of Riverkeeper Sweep 2020 on October 17.

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