Little by little local organizations work to preserve Hershey Lake

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HERSHEY, Neb. -- Keep North Platte & Lincoln County Beautiful, KNPLCB, teamed up with the Platte River Scuba Divers to clean up Hershey Lake Saturday afternoon.

"We've kind of taken on the mission to keep our waterways clean," Mona Anderson, KNPLCB's Executive Director, said.

Anderson led a clean up brigade around the lake. Their goal was to pick up as much trash as possible.

Anderson said some of the common items people throw out are cans and glass bottles. However, they also occasionally find tires, plastic chairs and even diapers. Anderson said cleaning up these items preserves the lake for future generations to enjoy.

"If we're not doing this," Anderson explained, "then the fish are eventually eating the plastic. (They) will eventually die so we won't have that option to be able to fish out here anymore."

The Platte River Scuba Divers assembled a dive team to go under the water and retrieve the trash that the people on the land could not reach. The organization's president, Casey Sack, said they also find all kinds of items on the bottom of the water.

He said they have previously found oil cans, propane tanks and packs of syringes. The divers want to pick up those items and dispose of them properly so people won't be concerned about stepping on them when they go for a swim with their family.

"Once you go under the water and see the amount of stuff that can be down there in certain lakes at certain times, " Sack began to explain, "(We want to help) the environment (and picking up trash) helps keep the lake clean and fun for people to bring their families."

Sack said many of the divers are personally invested in this cause because they use the lake all-year round and for some divers this is where they first learned to dive too.