Boonville River Festival and Cleanup 2014

Franklin Island Conservation Area and Isle of Capri Hotel & Casino - Boonville, MO
Saturday, September 20th, 2014

As part of our 2014 Big Muddy Clean Sweep, a two-month continuous clean-up in September & October, we spent a wonderful week in Boonville. The day included two events in one with the Boonville Missouri River Clean-up and first ever River Festival. It was a full day of fun on the river - one we'll never forget!

In the morning, 200 volunteers hit the muddy, receding river in boats to remove an estimated 3.4 tons of junk from the river.  A huge shout out to our agency boat drivers from the MO Dept. of Conservation and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service who took out lots of eager volunteers. Scroll down to the end to check out the trash tally!

After the clean-up, we gathered in the Isle of Capri Hotel & Casino parking lot, in the shadow of the iconic Katy Bridge, for an afternoon of art, river education, fantastic music, food and more.

2014 Boonvile River Festival and Cleanup
The music was fantastic! Thank you to all the performers at the Festival. Photo by Melanie Cheney.

More than 25 booths of educational exhibitors, kids activities, student art exhibits and even a contingent from the Boonville farmer's market filled up the NW corner of the Isle's parking lot. The music was fantastic, as we enjoyed tunes from WildHeart, The Boone County Tick Pickers, Violet and the UnderCurrents and the Cindy Wolfe Band.

We finished up our big week on Sunday & Monday hauling and disposing of all the trash.  Advanced Disposal donated a roll off dumpster for landfill, Gavilon Fertilizer took our scrap metal, and Bridgestone/Firestone sent a truck where we loaded 144 tires to be recycled by Black Gold from our Clean Sweep efforts through Brunswick to Boonville.

2014 Boonville River Festival and Cleanup
Volunteers waiting on the boat ramp for one of our experienced operators to take them to pre-scouted trash locations on the bank of the Missouri River. Photo by Gertrude Foss.

Plus, we hit the classrooms for two weeks before the event, sharing river knowledge and engaging local students in the future of the river. Here's a great story about one of these wonderful student projects, a "Trash to Art" exhibit by Boonville High School students.

A huge thanks to all of our partners, volunteers & sponsors who helped make these events possible. Boonville really stepped up and made the first ever River Festival a huge success.

2014 Boonville River Festival and Cleanup
Dignitaries boat cruise! Thank you for your support tp make this all possible! Photo from Anecita Sancho Alvizo

River Festival Highlights


The Isle of Capri had a tent of items from the "Farmer's Pick" buffet . They donated lunch to all of our volunteers. Thank you Isle!


Educational Booths by these great organizations

Missouri River Relief
Missouri Stream Team Watershed Coalition
U.S. Fish & Wildlife - Big Muddy Refuge
Boonville Farmer's Market
The Sierra Club Osage Chapter
Missouri Master Naturalists Boonslick Chapter
WaggonsWest Upcycled Clothing
Greenway Network
Raptor Rehabilitation Project
Citizens Climate Lobby
Calvary & Company - Climate Change Puppet Show
The Katy Bridge Coalition
Breathe Easy Boonville
Celestial Body
Cooper County 4H
Turner Hall River Rats for the Arts
Missouri River Cultural Conservancy
Missouri River Bird Observatory
Missouri River Communities Network
USGS - Missouri River Restoration Science
Concerned Citizens for a Better Community
Central Missouri Community Action
Our Missouri Waters

Some of our favorite "What does the river mean to me" illustrations from the River Festival!

Trash Tally:

121 Bags of Trash
39 Tires
1 Refrigerator Door
1 - 55-Gallon Plastic Barrel
3 - 55-Gallon Metal Drums
5 - 5-Gallon Plastic Buckets
3 - 5-Gallon Metal Buckets
3 - 5-Gallon Metal Oil Cans
8 Chunks Styrofoam (very large)
1 Propane Tank
1 Plastic Lawn Chair
1 Plastic Lawn Chair Seat
2 Plastic Planter Tubs (25 gallon)
1 Furnace Blower Pipe
1 Car Bumper
1 Iron Fence Pole
1 Molded Child’s Headboard (faux oak)
1 Plastic Horseshoe (red, life size)
2 Conservation Signs

Items submitted to the Trash Contest! (Winners in Bold)
1 Glass Medicine Bottle
1 Bubble Wand
1 Bobber
1 Dice
1  Weird Bone
1 Metal  Loveseat (very nice)
1 Truck Tire
1  Message on a Ping Pong Ball
1 Golf Ball
2 Baseballs
2 Tennis Balls
6 Unique Glass Bottles
1 Railroad Spike
1 Cigarette Lighter
1 Torpedo (plastic)
1  Animal Skull (very long snout)
1 Gar Skeleton
1 Duck Decoy (Pintail duck)
1 Marker (red)
1 Plastic Mustache (glow-in-the-dark)
1 full can of Hairspray (volumizing)
1 Yellow Comb
1 Cobblers Shoe
1 Baby Flip-Flop (very tiny)
1 Air Horn Can (corroded)
1 Reflector
1 Decorator Icing Kit
1 green plastic Sand Box Turtle Lid
3 Light Bulbs
1 Reflective KU Business Cup
1 purple McDonald’s Toy
1 plastic Fire Extinguisher Toy
1 Love Cologne Mist

Boonville Cleanup Results

Photo album on Flickr

Photo album on Facebook

Dignitaries Cruise album on BDN Facebook

Rivernotes Blog


Total Volunteers: 203

  • Volunteers signed in: 171
  • River Relief Crew: 32
  • Boats: 7 (5 MRR, 1 MDC, 1 USFWS)
  • River Miles Cleaned: 12 (MM189-MM201)
  • River Stage: 13.6-ft. @ Boonville gauge
  • Landfill: 2.5 tons
  • Scrap Metal: 0.1 tons
  • Tires: 39 - 0.8 tons

Total Trash Tonnage: 3.4 tons

Groups Participating: Missouri River Relief Crew, Missouri Department of Conservation – Missouri River Field Office, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service – Columbia Conservation Office, Hartman Village, Cooper County Probation & Parole, Boone County National Bank, Hickman High School Biology Club, Katy Bridge Coalition, Arnold Stream Team 211, SFCC? Boy Scout Pack 257, Missouri Master Naturalists, Woods Around the World, Isle of Capri Hotel & Casino

Fun Team Names: Kewpies, Pirates, Misfits, Sizzlers, Cammando’s, River Rats, Boy Scouts 257, Caboose, Mizzou, Muskrats, Rubber Duckies, Donuts, Boone Bank, Fosse Posse, Rhodee’s, BC&B, Blues Clues

A Big Muddy Thank You To Our Event Sponsors:

River Festival Sponsors

River Festival Partners

Boonslick Heartland YMCA
Boonslick Industries
Carrie Lyn's Ice Cream Parlor
Cooper County C.E.A.S.E. Drug Court Program and the Cooper County Probation and Parole Office
C&R Market
Orscheln Farm & Home
Sydenstricker John Deer Dealership

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