Bluestone Lake cleanup project kicks off 56th annual Water Festival

HINTON, WV (WOAY) – The 56th annual Water Festival has made its return to Hinton once again and will last until July 31. Since it’s all about celebrating our local and beloved bodies of water, what better way to kick off the festival than by cleaning the water up?

“We have an open to the public joint agency cleanup event,” says John Drossart, a park ranger for US Army Core of Engineers at Bluestone Lake. “We’ve partnered with the West Virginia Water Festival, Bluestone State Park, and Summers County Camping to just try and clean the lake up a little bit and get some of the trash off the banks.”

A new addition to the Water Festival, local volunteers were invited to come out to Bluestone Lake to clean up plastic bottles, cans, tires, and whatever else that may drift upon the Bluestone banks.

“We come over here every weekend and fish and swim, so we thought we could give back today and come over as a family and pick up trash,” says one local volunteer.

Due to an ongoing dam construction project, the lake flows in the off-seasons have been more erratic, meaning water levels dropping slower and even flooding, which in turn, causes trash and debris to get caught along the banks. But, with the help from volunteers, it’s an issue that can easily be managed.

“Everybody likes coming down to the lake and enjoying what we have here, the resources that we have here, and nobody likes coming down to a trash pit, so we’re trying to clean it up as best we can and make it the best lake in the state,” Drossart says.

While this is going to be the only lake cleanup that’s part of the festival, other Bluestone Lake cleanup projects are expected to be held more regularly.

The Water Festival is just beginning, as it will be holding many more educational and fun events throughout the coming week ahead. You can find the full lineup of events for the Water Festival by going to

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