Following the tumultuous 2020 election cycle, the leaders of Tillamook’s Republican and Democratic Central Committees put their heads together to share their concerns for how negatively divisiveness impacts our society, our communities and our ability to work together to solve the very real problems we face. Tillamook County Republican Central Committee (TCRCC) Chair Mike Sears and Tillamook County Democratic Central Committee (TCDCC) Chair Fred Bassett reached out to Tillamook County Commissioner Mary Faith Bell for an idea on a project that both parties could work on together for the betterment of the county.
Commissioner Bell suggested a beach cleanup event for the South Tillamook County community of Tierra Del Mar, which has had its share of difficulties during the past year. With that idea, the Bridge the Gap Beach Cleanup was born. It will occur beginning at 10 a.m., on Tuesday, June 1, the day immediately following the busy Memorial Day Weekend.
Both Bassett and Sears expressed concerns over how the divisiveness and angry rhetoric of the past several months have overshadowed the fact that residents of Tillamook County have a long history of working together–regardless of political differences – whenever there’s a clear need. With any threat, like the fires last fall or the county’s perpetual floods, community members come out to support those most in danger or most affected.
“People work side-by-side to clear debris, sandbag buildings or deliver food to those in need,” Bassett said, “and no one asks or cares how the person working next to you voted.”
The Bridge the Gap Beach Cleanup is intended to re-invigorate that spirit and to remind the community at large of the fact that this energy of common concern and action is an integral part of what makes Tillamook County the special place it is.
Everyone, regardless of political persuasion, is invited to participate. Bags will be provided and Sears has committed to haul the refuse to the transfer station. Tillamook County will waive the transfer station fees for refuse from the cleanup. Those attending are urged to bring gloves and to wear appropriate clothing for the unpredictable Oregon Coast weather.
Parking for those participating will be available along Sand Lake Road at the south end of Tierra Del Mar, past the last residence. A central gathering and information station will be designated by an American Flag in that area of Sand Lake Road. This is also the area where disposal bags will be collected. Participants are urged to not block driveways or trespass on private property to approach the beach.
For more information, please contact TCDCC Chair Fred Bassett at 503-812-9141, or TCRCC Chair Mike Sears at 503-965-7736. Information about the event is posted on the TCRCC website at tillamookgop.org, and on the TCDCC website at tillcodems.org.
Join the fun and help Tillamook County Republicans and Democrats “bridge the gap.”