Hunting Island targets cigarette butts - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Hunting Island targets cigarette butts

By Jaime Dailey - bio | email

HUNTING ISLAND, SC (WTOC) - Nothing is better than a white, sandy beach in the summer. But there's nothing worse than stepping in something nasty as you dig your toes in the sand.

Hunting Island State Park is a popular place where people from all over come to enjoy the natural beauty of the island.

"It's wonderful, beautiful state park and we came out to see the lighthouse today and pick up shells with my daughters," said Janelle McGregor from North Carolina.

To help keep the island looking its best, the Friends of Hunting Island along with Keep Beaufort County Beautiful are teaming up and taking part in a program called Keep your butts off the beach. The park is not an ashtray."

"For some reason people don't look at cigarette butts as being trash so that's what we wanted to get across with this campaign is that a cigarette butt is trash and please don't leave it behind," said Vicki Ann Nestor, organizer and member of Friends of Hunting Island.

As part of the campaign, they've put up signs like this one throughout the park, reminding smokers to keep the butts off the beach.

They've also put up these ash recepticals at key places in the park

"I think it's great they put them in because a lot of people go our onto the beach, put their cigarette butts right where they are sitting," said Beaufort resident Pat Holstlaw.

"The thought they're trying to stop that and clean it up is awesome," said Beaufort resident Renee Glover.

The initiative has been in place for over a month and Nestor say it's working.

"We came up with over 300 cigarette butts was the very first scan in this area here alone and the last pickup we did a week ago and we were below 150 so we're ecstatic that the numbers have been decreasing," said Nestor.

Many who visit the park often say they've noticed a difference.

"Oh yes, it just seems so much cleaner," said Liz Hall.

This is part of a national campaign and tomorrow they'll be out cleaning the beach and counting the butts to see how it's going.

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