Clean-upSummers at Sunshine Village Ski & Snowboard resort are not only a great time for hiking, but also an opportune time to pick up lost items and trash that surface when the winter snow melts.

On Sunday, around 65 people participated in the Sunshine Alpine Racers ski club clean-up day and barbeque, which is held every two years.

“It’s a great family outing and it acts as an informal kick-off to the start of the ski season,” said Stewart Laver, the Sunshine Village ski and snowboard school director.

Laver, along with Alpine Racers president Al McCaig and White Mountain Adventures, team up with eager volunteers to ensure the resort, in the heart of Banff National Park, remains at its pristine best.

“A dozen vehicles arrived all at once, full of parents and kids,” said Bob Kinzie, who acts as a jack-of-all-trades for White Mountain Adventures.

The group rounded up a pickup truck-load of garbage, including many recyclable bottles and a plethora of odds and ends.

“People were all over Sunshine cleaning up and they found everything from skis to loonies,” said Kinzie.

Laver says the amount of garbage found has decreased over the years.

“In the late nineties, we did it every summer and used to require the big garbage Clean-uptruck to haul away all the garbage,” Laver said.

“By the mid-2000s, we just weren’t getting as much, which either means we were doing such a good job, people were littering less or we had better distribution of garbage cans in the winter or a combination of those factors.”

The always successful clean-up day is a crucial part of the ongoing effort to keep Sunshine Village Ski & Snowboard Resort clean and green.

“It was a beautiful, clear and sunny day and everything went really well,” said Laver.