The Allegheny River Cleanup has begun with around 80 participants volunteering in the first two days.
Nate Welker, one of the event's organizers, said approximately 30 tires were taken from a five-mile stretch of the river above Tidioute on Monday.
Now in its third year, he said the cleanup has seen many of the significant items already removed.
Times Observer photo by Colin Kyler
Volunteer Joe Colosimo unloads trash into a dumpster gathered from the Allegheny River on Monday.
"When you find one thing, there are a bunch of things there," Welker said. "It may be from flooding or people throwing stuff over the bank."
John Beard, another organizer, predicted they should collect more than 7,000 pounds of metal this year. Based on the first stretch of river, he said they are seeing almost as many items as last year.
"Unfortunately, it's going pretty well," Beard said.
A good sign has been the age of the trash, Beard said, as few recent items are being uncovered. Instead, he said they are finding soda cans with the original tabs and 1940s vintage appliances and bed mattresses.
In part, Beard said, that is due to flooding during the spring. At that time, he said, many older items were uncovered.
According to Welker, the group's tire pile is growing. They are keeping the trash in the vacant lot at the corner of Pennsylvania Avenue and Market Street in downtown Warren for now to show how much they have collected.
Welker said those pockets of trash in the river are growing further apart. Thanks to the cleanup, he said the river is becoming a cleaner and safer place.
On Saturday, Welker said the workers persevered through rain. Hopefully, he said, rain will not scare anybody off the rest of the week.
However, Welker said the weather has been warm. As a result, he said they are seeing a similar amount of volunteers as in previous years.
"We're really grateful for everyone who's come out," Welker said. "Folks are getting their hands dirty and doing a great job."
People can still participate, Welker said, by showing up at the appointed times and places of the cleanup. Paddles and life jackets will be provided, he said, and volunteers only need to come ready to clean up.
According to the event's website, Tuesday's work will start with participants meeting at Indian Waters in Tidioute at 8:30 a.m. It is anticipated to take between five and seven hours.
On Friday, the website stated volunteers will leave from Allegheny Outfitters at 9 a.m. Work on that day will last for six to seven hours.
The event will conclude on Saturday with volunteers meeting at Buckaloons at 8 a.m. and working for four to five hours.