Smoke clears on 4/20, exposing big piles of garbage
After the 4/20 smoke-in comes the 4/21 cleanup as city crews tackle huge mess left behind by 30,000 revellers
They came, they smoked, they left behind garbage ... lots of garbage.
That's what a city crew was left to deal with after yesterday's 4/20 rally, which saw roughly 25,000 marijuana advocates take over Sunset Beach for the annual pot protest and festivities.
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"We're never sure what we're going to face first thing in the morning, so we have 10 people here sweeping through the beach and park," said Howard Normann director of parks operations for the City of Vancouver.
"We have to watch for all kinds of things for safety."
Park Board chair Sarah Kirby-Yung estimates the cost of the cleanup will surpass last year's bill of $93,000.
At first light the crew was concentrating on the swath of park and beach that runs from the Burrard Street Bridge to the Inukshuk at English Bay, forming giant piles of garbage as they went.
Normann estimates the mess to be comparable to what is normally left behind after a night of fireworks.
"Our sanitation is coming down this morning with their big trucks and we'll load it all up and hopefully have it cleaned up before lunch," he said.
With files from GP Mendoza and Farrah Merali