Special Public Events/Tours

Coastal Cleanup Day

2019 Coastal Cleanup Day is September 21th. We typically begin taking sign ups for water clean up starting August 1. Please note, space is limited to 100 volunteers. To sign up, call (949) 640-9959. For land based clean ups, contact the Muth Interpretive Center. 

Thank you to all of our volunteers who participated and helped on September 15th, 2018 to clean up the Upper Newport Bay! We recorded a total of 902 volunteers at the land and water based clean up sites combined, and an estimated 15,692 lbs. of trash and recyclables removed.

Thanks to everyone that participated even if it wasn't at our site!

On behalf of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, OC Parks, the Newport Bay Conservancy, and the California Coastal Commission thank you for keeping our estuaries, beaches, waterways, and oceans clean!  We look forward to seeing you again next year.  There are 52 sites within Orange County to participate in this annual event, in addition to numerous sites throughout California.   

California Coastal Cleanup Day is one of the largest volunteer events in the country that is solely focused on the marine environment. Every year, over 40,000 volunteers statewide pitch in to help protect and conserve California's valuable coastal resources, and participate in what the Guinness Book of World Records (1993) has called "the largest garbage collection." California's Coastal Cleanup Day was started in 1985 by the California Coastal Commission, and over 8 million pounds of trash and debris have been removed from the state's beaches and waterways. One of the main goals of Coastal Cleanup Day, aside from removing trash, is educating the public about the garbage that ends up on the beach.

Most of the trash actually comes from inland communities, and gets carried to the coast through storm drains. The Upper Newport Bay watershed (the network of storm drains, rivers, creeks, and canals that all flow into the bay) covers 154 square miles, and encompasses the communities of Newport Beach, Irvine, Tustin, Orange, Lake Forest, Laguna Hills, Costa Mesa, and Santa Ana. People are often surprised that they can have an impact on the ocean even if they live far away.

A majority of the trash is made up of food containers, Styrofoam, plastic bottles, and cigarette butts; however, a number of unusual things have been pulled from the bay during Cleanup Day, including: shopping carts, bicycles, sofas, prison shirts, a U.S. Postal Service mailbox, Christmas trees, and even divorce papers!


Large groups (10 to 50 individuals) are preferred and encouraged to sign-up, but individuals or small groups are accepted as well. The maximum number of volunteers at this site is 100, therefore you must be pre-registered for this event. Please note that the minimum age for volunteers at this site is 12 years old to participate in the wetland and water-based efforts. Meeting location is the Back Bay Science Center 600 Shellmaker Rd. Newport Beach, CA.

Registration begins August 1st, for more information or to register, please call (949) 640-9959 


This year a maximum of 700 volunteers (all ages welcome) will participate to clean up the Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve park and trails. To register, please contact the Newport Bay Conservancy, Phone: (949) 923-2269 or email: unbic@ocparks.com.   All ages are welcome, volunteers under 18 are required to have adult supervision. Meeting location is the parking lot of the Peter & Mary Muth Interpretive Center at Irvine Ave. and University Dr. For more information, visit www.ocparks.com/uppernewportbay