Encanto Community Cleanup

Join I Love A Clean San Diego as we kickoff the Adopt-A-Park program at Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Center on Saturday, November 3rd, from 9:00 am – 12:00 pm. Volunteers will meet at 6401 Skyline Drive, San Diego, CA, 92114 to participate in a litter pickup to prevent waste from entering our waterways before they make it to the ocean. We have partnered with Lowe’s and Keep America Beautiful to host this cleanup, so there will also be beautification projects at the Recreation Center – come ready to spruce up the area!

We will have cleanup supplies, snacks, and water. We also provide community service hours and Letters of Appreciation for volunteers. This is a great opportunity for students and families to learn ways to protect our local environment!

We encourage volunteers to bring their own reusable items such as water bottles, work gloves, and buckets to promote zero waste practices and help us in our mission to have a zero waste, litter free and environmentally engaged San Diego region!

All volunteers are required to fill out a waiver form to participate and anyone under the age of 18 needs a waiver signed by their parent or guardian.

See you there!

For a map and directions, click HERE.
For the waiver, click HERE.
Register today!

Greetings from DC!

MJB-2010-photoshop-picToday’s blog comes from our Director of Development & Marketing, Morgan Justice Black, who along with another member of the ILACSD team, are in Washington DC this week for the Keep America Beautiful conference.



Hello from a chilly Washington, D.C. Even though it may only be 25 degrees outside, we are having a great time at the Keep America Beautiful National Conference learning more about how affiliates throughout the US create vibrant communities through community beautification, litter prevention, waste reduction and recycling! We made it to D.C., despite blizzard warnings and having to sprint through the Philadelphia airport to make our connection. And once we arrived…it was snowing! Quite a change for the two of us, both born and raised in San Diego! Well, the conference kicked off with a keynote address from Peter Kageyama, the man who has written two books about loving your city. How perfect, since we have a little fondness for the word “love” too! He spoke about the importance of gathering people together to interact casually in the outdoors. Can you guess where the most social place probably is in your city? The dog park!

Last night was the awards dinner, and I have to say that ILACSD certainly cleaned up! We were up and down accepting three…yep…three first place awards! And we have the pictures to prove it!

Natalie Roberts, Morgan Justice Black and Keep America Beautiful COO Becky Lyons with out awards!
Natalie Roberts, Morgan Justice Black and Keep America Beautiful COO Becky Lyons with our awards!

Our awards included first place for our Cigarette Litter Prevention Program, a program that we implement in San Diego in partnership with the Surfrider Foundation’s Hold onto your Butts program. Over the last five years, we’ve installed and maintained more than 100 ash receptacles in San Diego, helping make a dent in the amount of cigarette butts picked up during cleanups! In fact, in the areas that we’ve done this program, cigarette litter has decreased by an average 64%! This was a well deserved award for Natalie and her team in the Community Events Department!

KAB pic 3
Natalie accepting the CLPP award from KAB staffer Bronwen Evans.


Next, ILACSD was the recipient of a storytelling award, and this is the first year that this award category has been offered! Keep America Beautiful judges sifted through dozens of promotional materials, media articles, social media messages and more to identify five affiliates who are doing best at telling their story of building better communities. This is a true team win for us, as every member of the ILACSD team is involved in writing blogs and contributing to our social media!

Morgan, accepting the Storyteller Award from KAB staffer Mike Rosen, who was celebrating his 3rd day on the job!
Morgan, accepting the Storyteller Award from KAB staffer Mike Rosen, who was celebrating his 3rd day on the job!

The most exciting part of last night was the final awards category, the National Affiliate Awards. ILACSD was honored to receive First Place and awarded “Affiliate of the Year”. The plaque might not fit in our suitcases, but it will make it back to San Diego eventually! This award is truly an honor, since ILACSD has been an affiliate of Keep America Beautiful since the 1970’s. In fact, at breakfast today a man came up to me and told me how proud I should be to be part of I Love A  Clean San Diego because we were (and still are) a pioneer in the environmental movement! Back in the 1970’s, there were less than 50 KAB affiliates nationally, and we were the only one in California. Now there are more than 600 affiliates, and although I am biased, I have to say that we are one of the best!

So cheers from Washington, DC and thanks to all of our supporters for being part of our success!


Now it’s time for a nap…this three hour time difference is killer when the conference starts at 8am local time!


ILACSD- Winning First place for Keeping San Diego Beautiful!

The Keep America Beautiful Clean Community Systems was introduced in San Diego in 1977. The City Council and current Mayor Pete Wilson kabgave the green light for the organization to officially become an affiliate of Keep America Beautiful, and the name I Love A Clean San Diego was born. First as the program slogan, then eventually as our organization’s name! We are proud of our work with Keep America Beautiful (KAB).  This week, some of our staff are at the KAB conference to learn more.  Here’s how ILACSD has been keeping San Diego clean (and beautiful) and, we have to brag a bit, a few cool programs of ours that have been nationally recognized by KAB:

-For 2013, we won the KAB Innovation Award! To further educate San Diegans about the importance of waste reduction and pollution prevention,we launched a Bring Your Own Reusables campaign, encouraging volunteers to switch from disposable plastic bags and gloves, and single-use water bottles to a more sustainable alternative when volunteering.  Approximately 70% of volunteers (5,000+ out of over 7,000 participants) brought at least one reusable item to our largest volunteer event of the year, Coastal Cleanup Day.

Here we are accepting the award!
Here we are accepting the award!

-Cigarette Litter Prevention Program: I Love A Clean San Diego receives grant funding each year from Keep America Beautiful to combat the large cigarette butt litter issue facing local beaches, neighborhoods, and outdoor areas. ILACSD partners with the Surfrider Foundation San Diego Chapter to install permanent ashcans throughout San Diego County, and has launched programs in beach area communities including La Jolla, Oceanside, and Point Loma, and recently expanded the program inland in 2012 to include North Park, Mission Hills, and La Mesa. The successful program has an average 55% decrease in cigarette butt litter, proving that smokers can make the right disposal choice when proper infrastructure is available.

Butts in here!
Butts in here!

Creek to Bay: This cleanup is part of what KAB calls the “Great American Cleanup”.  ILACSD’s signature event, the Creek to Bay Cleanup, represents one of the largest environmental events of the year. Since the inception of this event in 2003, 44,528 volunteers have participated in this effort – resulting in the removal of 1.65 million pounds of debris from San Diego County locations. The mission of the event is to engage the community in removing debris from San Diego’s beaches, canyons, waterways, and parks. The 12th Annual Creek to Bay Cleanup is coming soon on April 26, hope to see you there!


-Last year, ILACSD was awarded 1st place for our Cigarette Litter Prevention Program

We’re looking forward to many great years ahead working with KAB! Got ideas for other innovative ways we can encourage conservation and protection of resources? Let us know in the comments!

Test Your Recycling Trivia!

Today’s blog post comes from our Development and Marketing Coordinator, Anna Fadem. Anna is currently in school and wants to make other people take tests…servlet

We know you want to keep America beautiful. Hey, so do we!  Luckily, we here at I Love A Clean San Diego are an affiliate of a national organization called… Keep America Beautiful!  We have adopted two of KAB’s programs and do them locally – the cigarette litter prevention program (which has decreased those butts by 55%) and America Recycles Day.  Keep America Beautiful recently released some really interesting information on how much Americans recycle and how we can up these rates.  Your recycled items can be turned into all sorts of cool stuff:

  • Recycled steel cans can become a bicycle
  • Recycled plastic milk bottles can become an outdoor bench
  • Recycled plastic water bottles can become a pair of blue jeans
  • A cereal box can become a board game (Life cereal=Life board game?)
  • Aluminum cans can become new aluminum cans endlessly and are infinitely recyclable!

    A milk bottle can be recycled into a park bench (cat not included)
    A milk bottle can be recycled into a park bench (cat not included)

KAB provided us with some good statistics on recycling.  So let’s get your recycling trivia up to snuff! School’s out, but here’s a fun quiz where everyone gets an A (because I Love A Clean San Diego loves its readers! And because the answers are at the end of this post).

Ready Set… Go!

1. How much trash does the average American generate per day?
a. 1.3 llbs
b. 2.7 lbs
c. 4.4 lbs
2. How much of that trash is recycled or composted?
a. 0.4 lbs
b. 1.5 lbs
c. 2.1 lbs
3. How much trash does the US produce each year?
a. 57 million tons
b. 176 million tons
c. 250 million tons
4. What percentage of Americans say they are “avid recyclers” (our favorite kind!)
a. 18%
b. 38%
c. 59%
5. Why do Americans say they don’t recycle as much as they should?
a. Lack of access
b. Convenience
c. Awareness/education
d. All of the above
6. So what can we do to get the message out there?
a. Mobilize individual ownership
b. Inspire an emotional connection
c. Learn what you can recycle at WasteFreeSD.org
d. Check out this really funny (really, our staff LOVES this video) PSA from KAB
e. All of the above

Let’s see how ya did! Answers:  c, b, c, b, d, d


We appreciate you for all the work you do to keep American beautiful!  For more tips on what you can recycle and where, check out WasteFreeSD.org.