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Quarterly Connection March 2021


Our mission is to protect coastal habitats through educating and connecting people with the environment.



It's the start of 2021 and our coastline is 3,500lbs cleaner!

January 9th was a day full of beautification for the Oslo Riverfront Conservation Area! More than 100 volunteers took on the colossal collaborative effort to clean up the property’s undeveloped coastal hammocks, scrubby flatwoods and estuarine wetlands.

The Coastal Cleanup was sponsored by Indian River County Parks and Recreation, Coastal Connections, Indian River County Recycles and Waste Management, with additional volunteers from Coastal Conservation Association, Environmental Learning Center, the Eugenia Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society, Keep Indian River Beautiful, Pelican Island Audubon Society, Sunrise Rotary Vero Beach, Vero Beach Power Squadron, Vero Beach High School and Indian River Charter High School. The cleanup was part of the Indian River County Conservation Lands Program’s objective to “protect, restore and sustain endangered ecosystems and associated rare and endangered species” while providing “passive public recreation, preservation of open space, groundwater quality protection, flood protection, protection of historic and cultural resources, and general preservation of quality of life” in Indian River County.

Overall, this strong group removed a staggering 3,560 pounds of human trash from this conservation area. The next Coastal Cleanup event hosted by Coastal Connections is scheduled for: 

  • April 24th from (9am-10:30am) at Round Island Park

Founding Director Kendra Cope releasing a rehabilitated juvenile green turtle originally rescued by CCinc volunteers (Pre-COVID).


Founder's Report

We started off 2021 full speed ahead and our team is not slowing down. We have new volunteers joining every day and new opportunities coming online to make a difference in Vero Beach, FL. Our leadership is constantly adapting to the ever-changing environment and making sure we all stay safe as we begin planning our annual summer programs and fundraisers. I could not be more proud to be representing this amazing organization and the volunteers who are the life blood of our mission. They are teaching people to recycle more than ever, engaging businesses to reduce their plastic waste, and effectively preparing for an expected high sea turtle nesting season. Our goal is to engage a larger and more diverse audience this year, and so we will continue to make our programs FREE for all.

We hope you enjoy our quarterly update, including its new additions like our 2020 Annual Report, Volunteer Highlights, and Event Calendar. If you love what we do, please support CCinc by giving within your means. Every gift is used to support our mission of protecting coastal  habitats to help sea turtles recover. 

-- Kendra Cope      


2021: By The Numbers


Total number of nests laid on Indian River County beaches. 2021 nesting season has just started. New nests coming soon!


Total pounds of trash removed by our Coastal Cleanups and weekly Educational zone cleanups.

The most common items included 5,298 cigarette butts, 1,424 plastic pieces, and 1,154 foam pieces. 


The pounds of single use wrapping collected by Wrap Program.

This material will be bundled by the County and recycled into outdoor furniture, playground equipment, planking and and more. 


Number of volunteers that make CCinc run smoothly. We are beyond thankful for each and every one of you and hope to see this number continue to increase! 



Coastal Connections, Inc. 2020 Annual Report 

  2020 was one of the toughest years in history, but thanks to supporters like you CCinc was able to create a memorable year and document it in our first-ever Annual Report. We had to adapt to new safety procedures and also how we interacted with those around us to remain focused on our Strategic Plan. We even experienced an 80% increase in our annual income thanks to generous donors like you. This major increase in contributions will allow us to protect more sea turtles and make bigger chnages in our community. We hope you enjoy this Annual Report!

Educate. Connect. Protect. 


Hatchling Emergence on Lawn with Homeowner

"Congrats Your Lawn Has Hatched!"

New Small Fundraiser: Hatch-A-Lawn! 

Coastal Connections Inc is constantly evolving and adding new programs and activities that align with our core mission. Our latest interactive fundraising activity is called Hatch-A-Lawn. In this activity, lawn owners experience a sea turtle emergence event (signs) to promote and raise awareness of the 2021 sea turtle nesting season. We bring sea turtle education and awareness to your home since we can’t all make it to the beach. Emergence packets include information about local sea turtle species and coastal connections inc. Educational material such as turtle-friendly light tests and turtle fact coasters are included! Hatchlings will remain on lawns for approx. 72 hours before they will "emerge" on the newly nominated house!

If you want to play along and would like your lawn to emerge with these little Hatchlings, please email: to join the waitlist.



Vero Beach Half Marathon

Coastal Connections: 2020 Race Beneficiary!

We are so thankful to have been chosen by Running Zone Foundation to be the VB Half and Sea Turtle 2 Miler beneficiary

Participants - 900                                                 CCinc Volunteers - 53

 Funds Raised - $3,000!


Tipsy Turtle 2 Mile

 Saturday, April 10th at 8am

 Sexton Plaza Beach 

Due to COVID-19, we have had to postpone this race twice to follow current health and safety guidelines. We are so excited to finally announce that on April 10th we will be bringing our biggest fundraiser event of 2021 to Sexton Plaza Beach! All funds raised through this event are used to support CCinc's mission of Protecting Coastal Habitats and will contribute to regional recovery efforts of sea turtles. This race is perfectly timed to kick off the 2021 sea turtle nesting season in Vero Beach, FL! This will be a fun family educational event filled with activities including: 

  • 2 Mile Fun Run
  • FREE Beer or Mimosas for participants 21 and older
  • FREE Hatchling Dash for runners 9 and younger (our favorite part of the whole day)
  • Silent Auction to Support CCinc
  • Beach Bash and Good Vibes all morning long 

To register for the 2 mile fun run, sign up today using the link below! All other activities, including the Hatchling Dash, Beach Bash, and Silent Auction are free to attend and participate in.


Volunteer Spotlight!

Annie Wettlaufer

Adding Beauty To The Vero Beach Streets! 

We are so proud of our amazing volunteer Annie Wettlaufer for creating this amazing masterpiece that is now located across from Humiston Park to remind everyone that ONLY RAIN should go down the drain.

This week our volunteers spent 2 hours cleaning up Ocean Drive and the nearby beaches and collected over 40lbs of trash! 

We hope everyone will join us in keeping our beaches and waterways clean to protect our wildlife and the habitats they need to survive. Please leave our outdoor spaces cleaner than you found them and don’t forget to use a Blue Beach Basket when you visit the beach.


Vero Goes Zero Initiative 

Community Sustainability Because Together We Can Make Change

Partially Funded By: Endless Summer License Plates

Coastal Cleanups - Continued Success!

Thanks to a community-wide effort, 3,560 pounds of man-made trash has already been removed from our environment! Photos from our first story show the major success Coastal Connections shared while partnering with Indian River County to kick off the first clean up of 2021. Coastal Connections' second public clean up will be held at Round Island Park on April 24th. The event will start at 9am with an educational presentation discussing recycling efforts, the types of trash you will encounter, and what Coastal Connections is doing to help!  

Beach Basket Program- New locations coming soon!

CCinc has partnered with local municipalities to install and monitor the blue beach basket program. We are pleased to announce that this successful program will be growing to 5 locations in Indian River County. These baskets are located at the entrance to public beach parks (and some private businesses) and are free for all patrons visiting the beach parks.

Indian River County Beach Accesses  

  • Wabasso 
  • Tracking Station 
  • Round Island 
  • Ambersands *Coming Soon
  • Seagrape Trail *Coming Soon
  • Turtle Trail *Coming Soon
  • Treasure Shores *Coming Soon
  • Golden Sands *Coming Soon

City of Vero Beach Beach Accesses

  • Humiston
  • Sexton Plaza
  • South Beach
  • Flame Vine
  • Jaycee/Conn Beach

WRAP Recycling 

Wrapping up 2020 and kicking off 2021! 

The WRAP Recycling Program is one of Coastal Connections' newest additions to our Vero Goes Zero initiative. It’s a collaborative program with Indian River County's Recycling and SWDD to help collect and recycle single-use plastic film and wrapping material such as grocery bags, cling food wrap, and packaging material. This material will ultimately become playground equipment and outdoor furniture. Once a business joins our WRAP program, CCCInc provides a FREE service to pick up and recycle the materials for them, as long as they collect and store the wrapping.

This program started in the final months of 2020 with three participating businesses: Anthony's Apparel, Purple Plum (Ocean Drive and Mall), and Riomar Country Club. We are pleased to announce the addition of 4 new businesses to start 2021: Beach Planet, Corey's Pharmacy, Beached Whale, and The Walking Tree Brewery. Please look for the Vero Goes Zero stickers at each participating business to support our WRAP program and sea turtle protection efforts. 

2020 Stats:

110 Pounds of Single-Use Wrap Collected! 

  • Anthonys' Apparel- 51.1 lbs
  • Purple Plum (Ocean Drive and Mall)- 19.5 lbs 
  • Riomar Country Club- 39.1 lbs 

2021 Stats: 

240 pounds of Single-Use Wrap Collected!

  • Anthony's Apparel - 175.2 lbs 
  • Purple Plum - 23.25 lbs
  • Beach Planet - 20.6 lbs 
  • Corey's pharmacy - 3.1 lbs 
  • Beached Whale - 3 lbs 
  • Walking Tree Brewery - 9.2 lbs 
  • Chelsea's  Gourmet *Coming Soon

Interested in having your business joining the WRAP program? Please contact



Upcoming Events!   

Wednesday Sunrise Beach Cleans - 7am at Sexton Plaza

(Events occur first Wednesday of each month, weather permitting)

March 25th - Land and Sea Charity Rebate Night @ Garage Pizza

April 10th- Tipsy Turtle 2 Mile Run/Walk 

April 24th- Coastal Cleanup @ Round Island Park 

(9am-10:30am - Round Island Riverside Park, 2200 South A1A, Vero Beach, FL 32963


Events are updated all the time and the best place to find out what CCinc is up to next is by visiting our live event calendar.


Thank you for subscribing to Coastal Connections' Quarterly Connection where will be updating supporters like you every few months on what programs and projects we are working on, areas we may need your assistance in, and successes to celebrate together! Thank you so much for your interest and support for CCinc. We ask that you please share this newsletter with others and encourage them to sign up for regular CCinc updates. 

Coastal Connections, Inc.

Please Visit Our Partner - Purple Plum Boutique

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