Kendall Dellasperanza’s fourth grade class from McNeil Canyon Elementary School prepares to scour a section of shoreline for trash Friday, Sept. 22 near Mariner Park in Homer. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News.)

Kendall Dellasperanza’s fourth grade class from McNeil Canyon Elementary School prepares to scour a section of shoreline for trash Friday, Sept. 22 near Mariner Park in Homer. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News.)

CoastWalk cleans up beaches and monitors ecology

Students from McNeil Canyon Elementary School walking the Homer Spit beaches last Friday have become the latest generation of citizen scientists participating in CoastWalk, the annual fall cleanup and beach monitoring project of the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies. While some kids delight in picking up gross trash, CoastWalk also inspires students to monitor beaches for things like erosion, bird and wildlife sightings, human use and other environmental information.

“Just a general ecological overview,” said CACS marine debris coordinator Henry Reiske about CoastWalk.

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Fourth grade students from McNeil Canyon Elementary School descend to the shoreline from Spit Road to clear away trash Friday, Sept. 22, 2017 near Mariner Park in Homer, Alaska. Each year, citizen groups and students from area schools can adopt a section of Kachemak Bay shoreline where they clean debris and observe changes for the Kachemak Bay CoastWalk, hosted by the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Fourth grade students from McNeil Canyon Elementary School descend to the shoreline from Spit Road to clear away trash Friday, Sept. 22, 2017 near Mariner Park in Homer, Alaska. Each year, citizen groups and students from area schools can adopt a section of Kachemak Bay shoreline where they clean debris and observe changes for the Kachemak Bay CoastWalk, hosted by the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Tanner Johnson, a fourth grader at McNeil Canyon Elementary School, marks down his group’s findings on a clipboard while he and classmates clean the shoreline on Friday, Sept. 22 near Mariner Park in Homer. Many school classes and citizen groups sign up each year to scour a section of coast during the annual Kachemak Bay CoastWalk, hosted by the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Tanner Johnson, a fourth grader at McNeil Canyon Elementary School, marks down his group’s findings on a clipboard while he and classmates clean the shoreline on Friday, Sept. 22 near Mariner Park in Homer. Many school classes and citizen groups sign up each year to scour a section of coast during the annual Kachemak Bay CoastWalk, hosted by the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Hannah Baum (left) and Ellen Barrett (right) balk at a particularly gross piece of garbage they found Friday, Sept. 22, 2017 on a stretch of Kachemak Bay shoreline near Mariner Park in Homer, Alaska. They and their classmates from McNeil Canyon Elementary School participated in this year’s Kachemak Bay CoastWalk, in which groups can sign up to adopt a section of coast to clean of debris. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Hannah Baum (left) and Ellen Barrett (right) balk at a particularly gross piece of garbage they found Friday, Sept. 22, 2017 on a stretch of Kachemak Bay shoreline near Mariner Park in Homer, Alaska. They and their classmates from McNeil Canyon Elementary School participated in this year’s Kachemak Bay CoastWalk, in which groups can sign up to adopt a section of coast to clean of debris. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Niko Erickson (left), Tanner Johnson (center) and Zephaniah Weisser (right) look at the progress they’ve made in recording their findings on the shoreline of Kachemak Bay on Friday, Sept. 22, 2017 near Mariner Park in Homer, Alaska. Several classes from McNeil Canyon Elementary School participated in this year’s Kachemak Bay CoastWalk, in which students and citizen groups can adopt a section of coast to clean up. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Niko Erickson (left), Tanner Johnson (center) and Zephaniah Weisser (right) look at the progress they’ve made in recording their findings on the shoreline of Kachemak Bay on Friday, Sept. 22, 2017 near Mariner Park in Homer, Alaska. Several classes from McNeil Canyon Elementary School participated in this year’s Kachemak Bay CoastWalk, in which students and citizen groups can adopt a section of coast to clean up. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Kendall Dellasperanza, a teacher at McNeil Canyon Elementary School, helps some of her fourth grade students transfer trash from one bag to another Friday, Sept. 22, 2017 during the Kachemak Bay CoastWalk at Mariner Park in Homer, Alaska. Citizen groups, including classes from multiple schools, adopt a section of Kachemak Bay shoreline to clean up during the annual event hosted by the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News.)

Kendall Dellasperanza, a teacher at McNeil Canyon Elementary School, helps some of her fourth grade students transfer trash from one bag to another Friday, Sept. 22, 2017 during the Kachemak Bay CoastWalk at Mariner Park in Homer, Alaska. Citizen groups, including classes from multiple schools, adopt a section of Kachemak Bay shoreline to clean up during the annual event hosted by the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News.)

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