Henry Burrows/Flickr

VENTNOR – It’s time to grab a pail and head to the beach, or anywhere in town, to celebrate the arrival of spring and renew your pledge to love where you live.

Makt Arts, a gallery and gift shop that opened on Ventnor Avenue in November, is offering a family-friendly way to have fun while sprucing up the beach and neighborhoods.

Starting Sunday, March 17, you can pick up a beach pail at the shop located at 5112 Ventnor Ave., and head out to the beach or any public space to pick up trash.

A $5 deposit gets you a colorful little bucket and shovel, great for picking up cigarette butts or other trash and plastic on the beach. The $5 is refunded when you return it to the store filled with trash or recyclables, and you get to keep the bucket.

Participants will have several weeks to complete their task. Buckets must be returned to the story by Earth Day, April 21.

“There’s no beach raking during the winter and the trash is mounting,” store owner Brenda Dowd said. “Although the Surfrider Foundation performs periodic beach clean ups, it’s on specific days. With this, you have five weeks to do it.”

Because the beach is not raked by the Public Works Department during the colder months, the trash left behind by people strolling the beach gets caught up in the waves and floats out to sea where it can harm marine life, said Dowd, who walks her dogs on the beach every day.

“I pick up trash all the time,” she said.

But she is just one person, and it takes a village, she said.

“It’s a simple concept, really,” she said. “I tried to think of a way to get others to pick up trash.”

Dowd said she will make sure the trash gets disposed of or recycled when it is returned to the store.

“We can all use a cleaner planet,” she said.

For more, see Makt Arts on Facebook.