Organizations team up for beach cleanup, restoration

MARQUETTE — Marquette beaches are being threatened, and two local organizations have teamed up to take action.

The Superior Watershed Partnership and Great Lakes Conservation Corps (GLCC) met with volunteers to clean up popular beaches around Marquette.

The cleanup served another purpose, one that aims to preserve the beaches for generations to come.

“I kind of view this as a way to prepare Marquette beaches for this fall and winter season,” said Tyler Penrod, GLCC Program Manager. “As the wind and the waves pick up, we want to make sure that our beaches are clear of litter, so it doesn’t end up in the lake. We also want to make sure that this beach grass, which helps hold the sand and our beaches in place, we want to make sure that that’s really thick and that their roots can really hold it down as the weather picks up.”

Beach grass is a natural way to fight erosion, because of its strong roots.

Both organizations are asking people to only walk on designated trail areas. Walking on beach grass kills it, which weakens the coastline against strong storms.

Strong storms on Lake Superior have been more frequent in recent years.