Ijams River Rescue

Ijams River Rescue has been cleaning up East Tennessee’s rivers, creeks, and streams for 30 years! Make plans to join in the fun during this year’s landmark event on Saturday, April 6, 2019,  from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

This popular, community-wide event focuses on up to 50 different cleanup sites along the Tennessee River and its tributaries. Each year, between 600-800 volunteers spend several hours removing tons of trash from these areas. Volunteers may come as individuals or in a group, such as families, friends, corporate teams, scout troops or church groups. Bags and gloves are provided, and each location has a site captain to assist volunteers.

In 2018, the 29th annual Ijams River Rescue was held Saturday, April 7, and 625 volunteers met at 42 public sites along the Tennessee River and tributary streams to make our East Tennessee home more beautiful. Folks came in boats, canoes and trucks. They brought wheelbarrows, rakes and a steely-eyed resolve to “do the right thing.” And despite cold, rainy weather, 39.7 tons of trash were collected from our local waterways.

The last time the numbers were this high was during the first three years Ijams tracked the event’s results. The amounts totaled 36 tons in 1995, 48 tons in 1996 and 35 tons in 1997. Most of 2018’s trash—an estimated 30 tons—came from one location: An illegal dumping ground on Love’s Creek. The City of Knoxville hauled away eight truckloads full of debris from that site alone, making it the dirtiest location in the annual cleanup’s history.

Even with this record-breaking site, the news is more good than bad: The remaining 41 sites together only yielded 9.7 tons of trash, which is on the low end of what has been collected over the years.

How To Register

If you are interested in volunteering for the 30th anniversary of Ijams River Rescue–Thank You! We are finalizing cleanup sites now. Once we have determined volunteer needs at each site, volunteers can register online. If you are interested in signing up a group for this event, we encourage EACH PERSON in that group to register individually so that we can get their waiver and contact information. This is especially important when trying to communicate specific instructions for parking and where to meet.

Event Sponsorship

Sponsorships for the 2019 event are now available! For more information about sponsorships, please contact Cindy Hassil at 865-577-4717, ext 117 or chassil@ijams.org.