SAN DIEGO — A group of elementary students didn't let Thursday's rainy weather dampen their day. About 1,000 people including students and teachers from about eight San Diego city schools - along with volunteers - made a trip to Mission Beach for I Love a Clean San Diego's "Kid's Ocean Day." They spent about two hours cleaning up the beach and collecting trash.

Prior to the event the students learned about the impact of littering and what kind of devastating impact it can have on oceans and marine life at assemblies held by I Love a Clean San Diego at their schools. The purpose of the event was to not only connect kids with their environment but to help take care of it as well. 

“It’s natural for us to protect what we love, like our families and our homes,” said Jack Ainsworth, Executive Director of the California Coastal Commission.  “These kids are showing the ocean some love and appreciation and encouraging us to follow their lead. They understand that our home doesn’t end at our doorstep and that we also need to tend to our wider home—the environment where we all live—since we depend on the ocean being healthy, and the ocean depends on us to keep it that way.” 

 After the cleanup, the group formed an aerial art image of a California sea lion with the words “PROTECT WHAT YOU LOVE.”