Meet Green Lake Litter Patrol

February 19, 2020 10:55am

Some heros wear capes. Others wear orange vests and carry trash pickup bags. Meet G. Todd Young, the kind soul who started the Green Lake Litter Patrol (GLLP) in 2012 and walks Green Lake every Sunday making sure it is cleaned up. The group has more than 6,400 hours of volunteer service and, thankfully, shows no sign of slowing anytime soon.

G. Todd Young calls himself the Lead Litter Picker and started the group eight years ago.

On the February morning that we met with Young he was gathering a group of nearly two dozen volunteers – outfitting them in orange vests and giving them trash bags and a trash grabber. In a cursory walk around the Green Lake Bathhouse Theater parking lot he said found a clump of things, from old bottles and wrappers, even a used needle. This is the low season. Imagine it in the summer.

While the Seattle Parks Department picks up trash on a regular basis in the park, GLLP focuses on the micro trash. That includes small pieces such as bits of plastics, floss and other items left outside the trash cans that can end up in the lake and be hazardous to people or animals. (Seattle Parks also endorses the GLLP for all the work they do to help with the Park.)

Young is a broker for Windemere in Green Lake, but says he travels from Lynnwood every Sunday to help clean up the park. What makes a person dedicate their time weekly to help a neighborhood that they don’t even live in? Young said he remembers watching a Keep America Beautiful ad as a child. In the ad someone throws a bag of trash out of a moving car hitting a Native American, who lets out a single tear as the bag drops at his feet. That stuck with him. He says he likes working beside the families and groups that come to help out weekly.

GLLP is always looking for volunteers. If you’d like to help, here’s what you need to know:

What to bring/wear: A comfortable pair of shoes. The group walks up to 2 miles. And weather-related gear. This is a year-round group.

Who can participate: Anyone and everyone. All ages are welcome to participate.

Where: The group meets every Sunday at the Bathhouse Theater parking lot, 7312 West Green Lake Drive North.

When: Meet at the parking lot at 8:45 a.m. to sign in and get your vest and supplies for clean up. The group departs at 9 and usually runs 2-3 hours, but people can come and go as they like.

More info: or Facebook