After the clock struck 4:20 pm on April 20th the large crowd that had formed at UCSC’s 4/20 celebration at the Porters Meadow began to disperse. Left behind were plastic bottles, candy rappers, empty chips and various other kinds of litter. The University did not appear to be providing clean up services for the event, instead some of the participants of the 4/20 event took the responsible upon themselves to clean up the mess.
Elliot, a Cabrillo College student who declined to state his last name, walked around a crowd of people who were smoking around 5:30pm carrying a red bucket filled with bottles, bits of paper and empty cigarette boxes.
His motivation for cleaning up litter simply stemmed from him possessing a bucket.
“I am trying not to leave a trace,” Elliot said.
Fourth-year Anthropology major, Michael Salemi, strolled the perimeter of a drum circle with a near empty white plastic bag picking up any scrap of litter that he could find camouflaged by the grass that had been flattened by the large amount of people who attended the 4/20 celebration.
“Cause all I see is trash, cause I have the time, I try to pick up trash in natural places,” stated Salemi as his motivations to pick up the garbage he found on the Porter Meadow.
There is no sign that the University will be cleaning up the Porter meadow. According to Salemi, people who participated in the event cleaned up most of the trash at last year’s 4/20 celebration.
“ Last year I was here towards the end of the night, I helped clean up as well,” Salemi said. “[I made] piles of trash and people came to clean them up.”