On Saturday, May 7, Staunton River State Park will hold a Volunteer Clean Up Day in an effort to speed up the time frame for reopening the park to visitors. The park has remained closed since it was struck by an EF-2 tornado on April 16, and park staff has been involved in a massive effort to clear trees downed by the storm. Volunteers are needed on Saturday from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. to help clear small debris, focusing primarily on the campground area.
Volunteers must wear long pants and closed toe shoes (no sandals or flip-flops). In addition, volunteers should bring work gloves, safety glasses, ear protection, and insect repellant. Volunteers who have rakes or leaf blowers available are asked to bring those as
well. A parent or guardian must accompany youth volunteers under 16, while youth ages 16-17 must have parental consent.
Since the tornado struck, the park has received numerous offers of help from the community. However, unsafe conditions in the park made it impossible to allow volunteers to come in until now. Josh Ellington, Park Manager, says “the community support following the tornado has been overwhelming.” He invites anyone who wants to lend a hand to come out on Saturday. Volunteers will only be allowed into areas deemed to be safe to enter. Volunteers are asked to pre-register for this event if possible, by phone, 434-572-4623, or email to [email protected].