Buy a SUBWAY. Help Clean the Mississippi

Subway Living Lands and Waters -


One of our country’s most famous authors served as a captain on the river and eventually took a pen name with roots in the same body of water. He referred to it as majestic and magnificent. An artist who studied with Grant Wood created sculptures from the dense clay from the banks of the river. There’s even a dessert named for it. It’s critical to the transport of goods in our country via the lock and dam system. It’s important for many reasons.

Mark Twain describes it in his book Life on the Mississippi, “the great Mississippi, the majestic, the magnificent Mississippi, rolling its mile-wide tide along, shining in the sun…” If you look at the Mississippi River on a map, it runs due west in only one part of the entire 2,300+ mile length. That’s where we live. Around here, there are many places to see the river. There’s a bike path that runs along it as does our minor league ballpark.

The Mississippi River can be beautiful. Living Lands and Waters is doing their part to keep it that way. -

One of my favorite places to view the Mississippi River is Leach Park, just a short drive from our home. An old dock that used to be home to various riverboats is now a place to stand and view the river. I’ve even watched people fish from it. The park offers a boat launch that allows casual boaters and river rats the opportunity to enjoy the river first hand.

Leach Park in Bettendorf displays the Mississippi River locks and dams as art. -

The bike path I previously mentioned overlooks Leach Park and accommodates walkers and runners as well. It connects to the park via one of the coolest sets of stairs I have ever seen. What appear to be randomly placed markers on the stairs are actually a depiction of the Mississippi River’s lock and dam system. You can stand at the top or bottom of the stairs and see an architectural representation of the flow of the river with markers that indicate the lock and dam numbers and elevation as it descends toward the Gulf of Mexico. People come from near and far to see the breathtaking bald eagles who call this part of the Mississippi River their home.

It’s beautiful, mostly.

Sadly, when you look closely, you’ll see it is also filled with garbage. In 1998, Chad Pregracke founded Living Lands & Waters. In 2013 he was named CNN Hero of the Year. For up to 9 months of the year, Chad and his team live on a barge hosting cleanup efforts, conducting workshops, offering tree-planting opportunities and many other conservation efforts. Aside from the actual cleanup, Living Lands and Waters is educating people on just how much garbage is ending up in the Mississippi River. In 2010 they hosted 23 events and removed 62,000 pounds of garbage from the river. During only 12 events in 2014, over 90,000 pounds of garbage was cleaned up. 90 THOUSAND pounds. In the river. In Mark Twain’s majestic, magnificent Mississippi.

It’s sad the amount of garbage that can be found within and along the banks. Part of it is from people who litter. Other garbage ends up in the river as a result of the annual flooding. Each year the Mississippi powers past the banks and into the land. Many cities, such as those here in the Quad Cities, have complete businesses and homes under water each year when the river rises. Garbage in the street along with debris from businesses and houses ends up flowing down the river with the current.

SUBWAY® Restaurants support Living Lands and Waters. - #YouShareWeShare

Living Lands and Waters is dedicated to putting some of that back where it belongs and now they have some extra support. From now through August 31st, more than 1,200 local SUBWAY® Restaurants are participating in the “You Share. We Share.” campaign to help support different charities.

SUBWAY® are giving back by supporting Living Lands and Waters. - #YouShareWeShare

As part of the “You Share. We Share” campaign, communities are encouraged to get out and share their weekends with SUBWAY® Restaurants, and SUBWAY® Restaurants in the Quad Cities area will share right back by donating a percentage of weekend sales, up to $10,000, directly to Living Lands and Water.

Whether you live near the Mississippi River or not, you can certainly appreciate the efforts of Living Lands and Waters. If you live in the Quad Cities, I encourage you to support their efforts while enjoying the food and the weekend. Not in the Quad Cities? Contact your local SUBWAY® restaurant regarding the “You Share. We Share.” campaign.

This blog post is part of a paid SocialMoms and SUBWAY® blogging program. The opinions and ideas expressed here are my own.

39 thoughts on “Buy a SUBWAY. Help Clean the Mississippi

    1. Agreed, Myrah. I would rather they do something like this than what some organizations do. Each year when the pink packaging comes out, I stay clear because I’ve noticed the packages are often smaller but the same price. In those cases, it isn’t the company donating but the consumer by way of paying the same and getting less. The Subway promotion is the way it should be.

  1. Stunning settings and photos! The shots of the bridge, the river and the bike path reminded me of our Hudson River and Tappan Zee bridge. I love being near water as I find it both healing and calming. I totally get your love for your neck of the wood … it’s beautiful! 🙂

    1. It’s a cool promotion, Vera, because each participating Subway is doing something “local”. Living Lands and Waters is based here in the Quad Cities. Other areas participating in the You Share We Share promotion are supporting other charities. Is your local Subway participating?

  2. We like Subway (My son is a little bit addicted to Subway sandwiches) but I totally homor them for supporting such important efforts to make our country clean and beautiful. 90 Thousand?!? That is absolutely ridiculous. People should have some common sense and decency and dispose of their trash properly. I hate to think of all the recycles that are being wasted!

    1. I know it sounds like a lot, Jen. It is. It isn’t all the result of human choice. Whenever the river floods, everything in the path is swept into the water. The Mississippi is extremely powerful with strong undertows. It’s quite a sight when the city floods, but it’s sad to see the aftermath both in the water and on the streets.

  3. I’m loving Subway more! They are very generous and very proud that their giving back to their community. Many people will benefit from this campaign.

    1. Thank you for your feedback, Kandas. I like that Subway is bringing attention to different causes that might otherwise be overlooked. Some people may opt to forgo purchasing a Subway and donate directly. Better yet, they may opt to volunteer. Sometimes the publicity becomes a win/win for the company as well as the charity.

      1. When I was bored during English class, I’d stare out the windows of my high school in Minneapolis, MN and watch the Mississippi River and all that was at or in the river during English class. I still somehow managed to get a B in English…

  4. Good for Subway. Passed over the Mighty Mississippi many times going from or into Arkansas at Memphis. Seen it flooded out of its banks overtaking the farm land, or so dry could almost walk across it.

  5. I love this initiative from Subway. It’s so funny – when we were traveling in our fifthwheel we stayed at a campground on the Mississippi. One of our cats escaped from the trailer and I was so upset. I thought she was gone. But I found her sitting on the truck bed just watching the barges go down the river. She was fascinated by that river.

  6. It’s wonderful what this organization is doing to clean the Mississippi and it’s great that Subway is helping support them. Waterways are so important and we need to protect them. Education is also very important, what a great organization and wonderful effort.

  7. I have never seen the Mississippi River in person, it is on my list. It’s so sad really that people think it is ok to throw trash wherever they please. Just because it is easy or they don’t have to look at it — it is harder for someone else and someone else has to look at it. Living Lands & Waters sounds like a great organization for Subway to support!

  8. I live just a few blocks from the Mississippi river too. Maybe sometime I’ll have to float down to visit you. 🙂 Love to see support for keeping it clean and vibrant.

    1. Yes, Chrysa, you need to do that. Float yourself my direction and we’ll have lunch and you can stay and hang out for a while. The float back home might be a bit difficult thought. 🙂

  9. This is a great program and a great way to give back to the community and help preserve the Mississippi for future generations to enjoy.

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