The snow is starting to melt around town and with it comes the emergence of natural and human generated waste. There are many ways residents can get involved in bringing beauty to Whistler’s parks in preparation for sunny days enjoyed outdoors. Protecting Whistler’s natural assets is part of the community’s history, and it has been supported through strong community action for decades.
Yard waste drop off: May 12–14. For details, please visit www.whistler.ca/free-yard-waste-drop-weekends
Garden debris burn: April 28–May 15. Homeowners can safely burn garden debris by obtaining a permit from the Whistler Fire Rescue Service. As part of the permit process, residents can also get a FireSmart home property assessment. Whistler’s wildfire risk is high and managing our community’s risk is a shared responsibility.
The Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) is investing heavily in an accelerated and aggressive wildfire protection program, which includes forest thinning projects to create fire breaks on public lands, applying FireSmart principles to protect critical infrastructure and municipal assets.
Homeowners can considerably reduce the risk of their property being destroyed in a wildfire by scheduling a free FireSmart property assessment (by contacting Whistler Fire Rescue Service 604-935-8260 or firstname.lastname@example.org), and dropping off yard waste or burning garden debris safely later this month. More information can be found at www.whistler.ca/firesmart.
The annual Pitch-In Day: May 6. Since 1989, the RMOW has organized an annual Pitch-In Day. Hundreds of volunteers, including community groups and local sports associations, gather to clear litter from Emerald to Function Junction. Roads staff will remove the yellow litterbags and sort recyclables. Volunteers will focus on the subdivision roads since Highway 99’s ditches are cleared later in the spring by Mainroad Contracting.
Members of the public who are interested in supporting Pitch-In Day can email email@example.com. Picking up litter along roadways is an important way to protect natural habitats from toxins because garbage left in ditches is easily blown or washed into creeks, forests, and other sensitive areas. Pitch-In participants are rewarded for their work with a BBQ hosted by the Whistler Fire Fighters Association. The food and drink will be donated by Nesters, IGA, and the Village Grocery Store, and the event is also sponsored by Pitch-In Canada.
Another form of litter is pet feces. Dog waste left on the ground contributes to various human and pet health risks, and runs the risk of a $100 fine. For more information about responsible dog ownership, visit www.whistler.ca/dogs.
Bears are emerging from hibernation and have been spotted in the Valley. Residents need to be mindful about storing and disposing of any wildlife attractants, including garbage, recycling, bird seed and pet food. Residents and visitors should report bear activity and encounters in residential areas to the Conservation Officer Service at 1-877-952-7277 or 604-905-BEAR. Early reporting, helps to protect the safety of community members and ultimately the bears. Learn more at www.whistler.ca/bears.