Valdosta Watergoat installed in Sugar Creek 2022-06-21

Two years of politics and less than an hour to install. And a fun summer solstice celebration!

[Delivery, installation, WaterGoat]
Delivery, installation, WaterGoat

Today the WaterGoat the Valdosta Mayor announced a month ago was installed on Sugar Creek, where it should stop trash from getting into the Withlacoochee River.

This first trash boom (a steel cable with floats and a 12-inch mesh below it) is a good start.


Jeff Mills of WaterGoat said he’s “hoping this will do good things for Valdosta.”

Many thanks to Bobby McKenzie (who was at work), Russell Allen McBride, and Suzy Hall, who have been involved in this effort for the past year or more, and all the other volunteers who have helped.

[Say WaterGoat]
Say WaterGoat

As Russell said, “A long time coming, but better late than never.”

Nobody showed up on the clock from the City of Valdosta. But I will thank Mayor Scott James and the entire City Council, including Andy Gibbs, in whose district we installed the WaterGoat, and who showed up and helped on a recent cleanup.

Now Valdosta needs at least two more trash booms, on Two Mile Branch and Three Mile Branch, and Valdosta needs to stop the trash at its sources upstream by getting parking lot owners to keep it from getting off their property and putting in the trash cans required by city ordinances. I look forward to Valdosta setting an example by putting trash cans in its own parking lots near City Hall.

This all started in April 2020 when a landowner on Two Mile Branch reported rafts of trash. Although Valdosta knew of it at least since its 2010 Stormwater Master Plan, which describes and depicts trash along multiple creeks and says something must be done “immediately.”

Suzy Hall remarked, “A lot of work has gone into this day. It should have been done twelve years ago.”

She added, “Hopefully this will be the start of a better day for generations to come.”

Some of those generations were there: two of Suzy’s grandchildren and one of Russell’s.

[Saige leading the way]
Saige leading the way

See also facebook photoset by Suzy Hall.

For much more about the trash situation, see:

Last trash

[The last trash from the old boom]
The last trash from the old boom


[Two out of three]
Two out of three


[Lots of yellow floats]
Lots of yellow floats


[Movie: A long time coming, but better late than never. --Russell Allen McBride (20M)]
Movie: A long time coming, but better late than never. –Russell Allen McBride (20M)

More unloading

[Movie: Here comes the boom (6.9M)]
Movie: Here comes the boom (6.9M)


[Start down to the creek]
Start down to the creek

At the creek

[WaterGoat and old boom, Jeff Mills and Russell Allen McBride]
WaterGoat and old boom, Jeff Mills and Russell Allen McBride

Tie it high

[Right bank]
Right bank




[River birch]
River birch

Russell trimming branches

[Right bank catalpa]
Right bank catalpa

WaterGoat detail





[WaterGoat, banners, old boom]
WaterGoat, banners, old boom


[Jeff Mills and Russell Allen McBride]
Jeff Mills and Russell Allen McBride

Here is a WWALS playlist of the videos by John S. Quarterman from today:

[Banners with Suwannee Riverkeeper]
Banners with Suwannee Riverkeeper

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

You can join this fun and work by becoming a WWALS member today!