Shopping carts, auto parts and sopping-wet clothes were part of the haul Saturday morning as more than 400 volunteers fished trash out of the L.A. River at Griffith Park.
Teams of volunteers fanned out on the concrete levee near Bette Davis Picnic Grounds in Griffith Park, wading into the water and rock-hopping among the reeds to retrieve PVC pipe, cans, bottles and more during the 22nd annual Friends of the Los Angeles River cleanup.
It was a record-breaking day, said Friends of the L.A. River Executive Director Shelly Backlar. Between 4,000 and 5,000 volunteers visited 14 spots on the river Saturday, surpassing the previous top turnout of 3,000.
Backlar said the effort bodes well for her group's Urban River Challenge with the Friends of the Chicago River to see who can draw in more volunteers, pull out more trash and earn more Facebook friends this spring.
The cleanup day, she said, "is not just about trash. It's about people saying, 'Wow, we have a river, and it's a pretty nice river. It's not the river we see in 'Terminator 2.'"