Ozark Outdoors

Plenty of ‘TLC’ make Taneycomo Lake Cleanup a success

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Volunteers at the Taneycomo Cleanup 2015 included students from Missouri State University.

Members of the Missouri Stream Team at the Taneycomo Cleanup 2015 included students from Missouri State University. The volunteers removed 2.5 tons of detritus from the lake.

More than 100 volunteers turned out Saturday, Sept. 19, for the Sixth Annual Taneycomo Lake Cleanup, also known as “TLC for Taneycomo.” Eighteen boats carried groups working out of Branson, Rockaway Beach and Empire Park at Forsyth and covered lake areas from Point Lookout to Powersite Dam.

Just a small portion of the discarded or lost trash collected from the shores of Lake Taneycomo on Sept. 19

Just a small portion of the discarded or lost trash collected from the shores of Lake Taneycomo on Sept. 19.

Volunteers pulled more than 2.5 tons of debris from the lake, including 47 tires, large pieces of Styrofoam, plus appliances, large metal containers, a huge banner and a stuffed bobcat.

“It was a beautiful day for the shoreline cleanup”, says Gopala Borchelt, Senior Projects Director for Ozarks Water Watch and Table Rock Lake Water Quality.  “Everyone enjoyed the challenge and the camaraderie.”

Missouri Stream Team volunteers brought their colorful kayaks to work the shoreline, and several students from Missouri State University made the trip to get outdoors and make a difference.  A group of twenty Link Year students from Kanakuk Kamps also joined in to help in the cleanup.  Rockaway Beach residents also showed support with a strong number of volunteers from their community.  Volunteers received “rainbow trout pink” t-shirts and enjoyed a picnic lunch in the three park locations.

Community support for the Taneycomo Lake Cleanup was provided by Empire District Electric Co., Cooper Creek Resort & Campground, Angel Inn Hotels, Kanakuk Kamps, Lilley’s Landing Resort and Marina, Dixie Stampede, Table Rock Asphalt and Construction, Scotty’s Trout Dock & Marina, The City of Branson, Connell Insurance Co., Central Bank of Branson, Republic Services, O’Reilly Auto Parts, KRZK and KOMC Radio Stations, White River Valley Electric Cooperative and the Missouri Stream Team.

Two volunteers with a load of trash from Lake Taneycomo recovered during the Sixth Annual TLC.

Two volunteers aboard just one of the 18 boats removing trash from Lake Taneycomo during the Sixth Annual TLC.

The Taneycomo Lake Cleanup is organized by Table Rock Lake Water Quality and Ozarks Water Watch, a non-profit organization dedicated to maintaining and improving water quality in the Ozarks.

George Freeman is a veteran journalist and photographer. An award-winning writer, editor and columnist in Springfield, Mo., with more than 50 years experience. His preference is for positive and uplifting stories about people, places, traditions and trends that make the Ozarks one of the most livable regions anywhere. A member of the Garden Writers Association of America, he is a past-president of the Society of Professional Journalists of Southwest Missouri, the Kansas and Ohio AP societies; a board member of Friends of the Garden and a member of the Rotary Club of Springfield. In 1976, he traveled to India as a member of a Rotary Foundation Group Study Exchange Team.

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