Firemen’s Pond in the Wanamassa section of Ocean Township got a little TLC recently when residents turned out to give the memorial pond a much-needed clean-up.
On Sun., April 18, from 10 a.m. until noon, about a dozen residents volunteered for the clean-up to the pond, just off Wickapecko Drive.
Wanamassa resident Matt van Oosterhout promoted the clean-up with flyers and it was done in conjunction with the Deal Lake Commission and township officials.
Oosterhout said he believed the pond was in “bad shape and that something needs to happen to improve it.”
“I care about the pond. This is the first cleanup and I am happy with the turnout. It was a beautiful day for the community to get together. With the Covid-19 pandemic, it is hard to socialize so this enabled us to get together,” he said.
Volunteers removed five bags of debris, like plastic, bottles and cans, and vegetation around the lake was pruned.
Van Oosterhout said he will hold another cleanup in the future.
“Definitely next year, around the same time,” he said.
Lois Kiely, who has a knee brace right now, said she brought snacks and hand wipes down to the site to help with the project.
“I think this was a wonderful, community-based effort and demonstrates that when neighbors get together, we can make a difference,” she said.
Van Oosterhout has prepared a nine-page study of Firemen’s Pond, with a litany of issues and possible solutions. He has submitted the plan to township and Deal Lake Commission officials.
“He gave us a proposal and we are reviewing it. We can definitely use some of the ideas and hope we can work with Ocean Township officials on the matter,” Deal Lake Commissioner Chairman Don Brockel said last week.
Wanamassa Firemen’s Memorial Park is adjacent to the pond, that runs parallel to Wickapecko Drive, from Grasmere and Raymere avenues in the Wanamassa section of Ocean Township. There is currently a monument at the park honoring firefighters. The pond and park are township property.