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Home : News : News
NEWS | Feb. 16, 2023

Annual Basura Bash cleans up Salado Creek at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston

By Sarah Otto 802nd Civil Engineer Squadron

Come rain or shine at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning, Feb. 18, 2023, we will once again meet up at the Salado Creek Park at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston to participate in the annual Basura Bash.

People all around San Antonio will be coming out to the participating creeks to remove the accumulated trash, which last year totaled more than 40 cubic yards.

Our efforts go a long way to protecting wildlife habitats, maintaining the quality of our drinking water, and keeping our recreation areas safe.

However, there is more that we can do by stopping trash before they get to the creeks. Most of the trash and debris we see in our waterways has traveled via wind and stormwater runoff to get there, sometimes from miles away.

Whenever stormwater flows upon the surface instead of soaking into the ground (stormwater runoff), it goes to our creeks and rivers, picking up trash and debris along the way.

Stormwater runoff transports the trash on the streets, including larger items such as tires, furniture, or broken appliances left on the side of the road, as well as the chemicals on our lawns and driveways, and waste from our pets. Even soil and grass clippings can have an adverse effect on the aquatic life in our waterways.

While the Basura Bash is a one-day event, people can help to keep our waterways clean every day by:

  • Reduce the amount of trash you use:
    • Fix or upcycle toys, clothes, or household items before you relegate them to trash.
    • Use reusable water bottles, grocery bags, cups and dishes, etc.
    • Avoid excess ketchup packets or other condiments at fast food restaurants that will only end up in the trash.
    • Reduce the amount of packaging on the products you buy whenever possible.
  • Putting trash/recyclables into their proper receptacles.
  • Securing trash or other items in truck beds.
  • Cleaning up chemicals spilled onto your driveway.
  • Properly disposing of pet waste.
  • Taking larger bulk items or construction waste to the landfill or setting out for your waste disposal’s bulk pickup service.
  • Reducing stormwater runoff by utilizing permeable surfaces and landscape elements that slow or collect rainwater in your home landscaping.

Preserving our waterways is a team effort, and one that will have a lasting effect. Thank you to everyone who has helped make this event a success over the years, and we hope to see you out again this year.

The Basura Bash is hosted by the 802nd Civil Engineer Squadron, and supported by the MWR Outdoor Recreation Staff, the Heavy Repair Shop, and many other individuals representing their units across JBSA.

Gloves, trash bags, and water will be provided for all volunteers, however, it is highly encouraged for any volunteers coming out to bring their own reusable water bottles, in order to reduce plastic waste. Hand sanitizer will be available at the registration table and by the food/water tables.

There will be a limited number of kayaks available for use during the clean-up, provided by MWR. Since a significant portion of the trash this year is in the center of the creek, we encourage anyone able to, to BYOK (bring your own kayak!).

Register for the 2023 Basura Bash online at It is recommended that volunteers wear long pants, sturdy shoes or boots, and bring bug repellent.

For more information on the event, go to or call 210-671-5993.