National Van Lines Joins Wyland in “Coastal Cleanup”
01.03.2005 | News | Deidra Poltersdorf
Internationally acclaimed marine life artist and environmentalist Wyland completed his 16-city East Coast coastal cleanup Tuesday, Aug. 31, in Key West, FL. As in previous education tours, long-time corporate sponsor, National Van Lines, provided transportation and logistical support.
Best known for his life-size “Whaling Wall” murals, painted in 68 cities around the world to promote ocean conservation, Wyland began his 1,770-mile Ocean Challenge Coastal Cleanup Aug. 3 in Old Orchard Beach, Maine. The goal of the project was to raise funds for environmental education and to inspire more than a million East Coast residents and visitors to protect and preserve the nation’s marine habitats.
“The theme is one million people will make a difference,” said Wyland, who has been recognized by the United Nations for his environmental outreach activities. “How fitting that we are ending up in Key West for the last leg.”
According to Maureen Beal, National Van Lines’ CEO, “National Van Lines considers working with Wyland a privilege. Watching him teach children to respect our oceans is inspirational. We have the greatest respect for his vision and dedication to the environment.” In addition to Old Orchard Beach, ME and Key West tour made stops in Hampton Beach, NH; New Bedford, MA; Providence, RI; Norwalk, CT; Coney Island, NY; Philadelphia, PA; Wildwood, NJ; Wilmington, DE; Ocean City, MD; Virginia Beach, VA; Wilmington, NC; Myrtle Beach, SC; St. Simons Island, GA and Hollywood Beach, FL.
Participants were given gloves and collection bags, and encouraged to choose a section of waterfront or beach to beautify. All collected trash was then surveyed, weighed and sorted for recycling.
Following the cleanup stage, participants joined Wyland for an environmental rally and beach party celebrating the completion of the Maine-to-Key West effort. Attractions along the tour included ocean art activities with Wyland, prizes and giveaways, celebrity guests, art festivals and live music by the award-winning alternative rock band 34 Below.
Wyland’s coastal cleanup is spearheaded by the not-for-profit Wyland Foundation in conjunction with San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography, the Birch Aquarium at Scripps, the Project AWARE Foundation and the Professional Association of Diving Instructors.
National Van Lines, recently ranked 22nd largest Certified Woman-Owned Business by Women’s Enterprise USA Magazine, has been affiliated with the Wyland Foundation since 1990.