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Earth Day Every Day

Cumberland County’s 31st annual Trash Hunt is a record-breaker.

Federation of Sportsmen from the tri-county area participated in the cleanup, with the Cumberland County Federation spearheading the event in memory of Lee Widjeskog.

Every March, the Cumberland County Clean Communities Program hosts a county-wide Trash Hunt to promote awareness and accountability for preserving the environment. The Clean Communities Program is a statewide, comprehensive, litter-abatement program created by the passage of the Clean Communities Act in 1986. It is administered by The Authority of Cumberland County. This year’s recent annual event saw participants throughout the County doing their part to keep Cumberland County beautiful.

The annual Trash Hunt would not be possible without the efforts of the Cumberland County Federation of Sportsmen. The hunt has now grown to include local environmental organizations, school groups, and individuals who want to get involved and make a difference. This year’s event was again held in memory of Lee Widjeskog, longtime member and secretary of the Cumberland County Federation of Sportsmen and backbone of the Trash Hunt.

“The Cumberland County Federation of Sportsmen is grateful for the continued partnership with The Authority,” said Rich Camp, president of the Federation. “This event started with the Federation in 1992 and we are happy to see the tradition continue year after year.”

With the help of The Authority, the Cumberland County Clean Communities Program, the Federation, NJ Fish and Wildlife, and the NJ AmeriCorps Watershed Ambassadors Program, 474 volunteers from 30 groups participated in the event, making it the largest cleanup to date.

The Authority’s Clean Communities program provided gloves, trash bags, and trash pickup after the event to ensure proper disposal. A total of 19.06 tons (38,120 pounds) of waste and 4.46 tons (8,920 pounds) of car tires were removed from various locations throughout the county. All trash was properly disposed of at The Authority’s Solid Waste Complex located on Jesse Bridge Road, Millville.

“First and foremost, I want to thank all our volunteers for their efforts, making this The Authority’s largest Trash Hunt to date,” said Samantha DeFrancisco, Cumberland County Recycling and Clean Communities coordinator. “A special thanks goes out to the Cumberland County Federation of Sportsmen, NJ Fish and Wildlife, and the NJ AmeriCorps Watershed Ambassador’s Program for their continued partnerships, allowing us to manage and host another safe and successful event.”

The Authority and the Cumberland County Clean Communities Program would like to thank all the volunteers who participated in the 2023 record-breaking event. The following groups and volunteers took part in the 31st Annual Trash Hunt:

  • The Cumberland County Sportsmen’s Federation
  • Good Sports Gun Club
  • Menantico Gun Club
  • South Millville Gun Club
  • Mauricetown Gun Club
  • Competition Dirt Riders,
  • East Creek Gun Club
  • Tri-County Sportsmen MC
  • Harmony Gun Club
  • Hickory Gun Club
  • Fortescue Anglers Fishing Club
  • Venatores Gun Club
  • Citizens United of the Maurice River
  • Pack 4 and Troop 4 Boy Scouts
  • Cub Pack One
  • Girl Scout Troop 54321,
  • Sheet Metal Workers Local 27
  • The Shoppes at Dragon Village
  • Johnstone School
  • Cumberland Regional High School Boys Basketball Team
  • Millville Woman’s Club
  • Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints
  • Southeast Gateway
  • First Harvest Credit Union
  • The Modzelewski Family
  • The Hoerl Family
  • The Mazzeo Family
  • Bill and Lisa Morrison
  • Diane Paladino and Family
  • Tim Nociti
  • Miss Cumberland County, NJ
  • AmeriCorps Watershed Ambassadors Program

“The Authority continues improve our tomorrow by promoting environmental sustainability in Cumberland County through its Clean Communities Program. We are proud to see so many volunteers take pride and work together to keep Cumberland County beautiful,” said Robert Nedohon, Board Chairman.

For more information on the Cumberland County Clean Communities Programs, visit

For information about two more earth-friendly county events scheduled for this year, see below.

Vineland Free Tree Seedling Giveaway

The Vineland Environmental Commission will be distributing free tree seedlings on Saturday April 29, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., as part of the New Jersey Tree Recovery Campaign. The drive-through event will be held at 1199 E. Park Avenue, in the parking lot at the corner of Main Road and Park Avenue. Each resident will be able to get up to three seedlings while supplies last, on a first-come, first-served basis.

The seedlings will include instructions on how to store, care for, and plant them. The guide also helps residents choose the right place on their property for planting, while keeping in mind the tree’s size at maturity. Seedlings should be planted within two days after pick-up in order to prevent the roots from drying out.

The program is a joint effort between the City of Vineland, NJ Forest Service, Urban and Community Forestry Program, NJ Forest Service Nursery, NJ Soil Conservation Districts, Arbor Day Foundation, FedEx, Texpo Energy, and Tomorrow Energy.

Anyone with questions may contact Diane Amico at 856-794-4000, ext. 4234, or

Scientists: An Opportunity to Work on Climate Change Mitigation and Clean Energy Policy

The Eagleton Science and Politics Fellowship at Rutgers University–New Brunswick recently announced a partnership with the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) to create a Climate Action Track for Eagleton Science Fellows.

Rutgers Eagleton Science Fellows Program places PhD-level scientists, engineers and health care professionals as in-house science aides in state government offices to help develop and implement science-based policies.

This new partnership between Eagleton and NJBPU will pilot a Climate Action Track, directly connecting STEM-trained academics with critical public policy design and development opportunities benefiting the State of New Jersey.

Climate Action Fellows will be embedded within NJBPU’s Division of Clean Energy helping to achieve Gov. Murphy’s ambitious goal of 100 percent clean energy by 2035. For the 2023-2024 cohort, up to four Eagleton Science Fellows will join the Climate Action Track. NJBPU will fund this cohort of fellows.

“The program has placed three Eagleton Science Fellows at NJBPU since the fellowship’s inception in 2019,” said Anna Dulencin, director of the Eagleton Science and Politics Program. “During their time at NJBPU, the Science Fellows have worked on a variety of projects, including offshore wind, solar, energy storage and exploration of tidal and wind energy generation.”

Dulencin said two alumni from the Eagleton Science Fellows program are employed as research scientists at NJBPU.

Since the program was launched in 2019, 23 fellows have been placed with state government agencies, including the NJ Office of Innovation and NJ departments of Education, Health, and Transportation.

NJBPU and Rutgers have signed a memorandum of understanding establishing this collaboration.

The Eagleton Science and Politics Fellowship is accepting applications for the July 2023-July 2024 term. To apply and for more information, visit

“Earth Day is Every Day”

Thursday, April 20. Cumberland County Library, 800 E. Commerce St., Bridgeton. 6 p.m. Michelle Rebilas, education and outreach coordinator for American Littoral Society, will share tips and tricks to lessen our daily impact on the planet—from simple daily changes to native plant gardening, to home water conservation and energy efficient technology. Library programs are free and open to the public; pre-registration required at 856-453-2210, ext. 26104, or e-mail:

City of Millville Community Yard Sale

Saturday, April 22. Captain Buck Park, Millville. 8 a.m.–12 noon. Recycle/upcycle your unused items. To register for a free 10×10 spot or for more details, 856-825-7000, ext. 7394 or e-mailing Tables and chairs not provided.

Bridgeton’s Semi-Annual Citywide Clean Up. Gateway Cap Warming Center, 7 Washington St., Bridgeton. 10 a.m.–1 p.m. Water, t-shirts, and cleaning supplies provided. Free giveaways at end of event. 856-497-6724.

Household Hazardous Waste and Document Shredding

Saturday, June 10. This event will take place from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Cumberland County Solid Waste Complex on 169 Jesse Bridge Road in Millville. This service is restricted to Cumberland County residents only and is free of charge. Businesses (including home-based businesses), institutions, non-profits and non-county residents are not eligible for participation in these events and should contact appropriate companies for hazardous waste disposal and document shredding. For more information, visit

Cumberland County Waterways Cleanup

Saturday, September 30. The Authority would like to invite you to participate in our Annual Waterways Cleanup, sponsored by the Cumberland County Clean Communities Program. The Authority will again provide the materials and waste collection necessary to have a safe and successful event. Registration forms are due to by Friday, September 8. For more information, visit