Bands of hardy volunteers of all ages hit the beaches around the Island Saturday for the 30th annual Earth Day beach day cleanup. It marked the 30th year for the event, sponsored by the Vineyard Conservation Society. The day was splashed with bright April sunshine.

At Bend in the Road Beach in Edgartown, groups eager to grab bags and start cleaning State Beach came in a steady stream. Friends of Sengekontacket volunteers handed out doughnuts, tick repellent and garbage bags.

“Right around 10, people started to show up and it’s been pretty good,” Friends board member Martha Klein said. “We’ve had a good turnout.”

Youth corps at State Beach. — Ray Ewing

For volunteers, it was an opportunity to participate in a community event and give back to the Island.

“I’m relatively new to the Island,” said Leah Gurowitz. “It seemed like a way of becoming part of the community.”

Volunteers found State Beach in good condition.

“It doesn’t look too bad this year,” Friends of Sengekontacket president Mike Krause said. “A lot of years it’s worse.”

Still, volunteers found plenty of odd and ends to collect, including the ubiquitous nip bottles.

Ms. Klein said nips are a particular problem on State Beach and have become a focus for the Friends group.

Nips collected from the Earth Day cleanup will be used to make Nipsy, a shark sculpture the Friends plan to display in the Fourth of July parade.

“The nip problem is still unbelievable,” Friends member Chris Hall said.

— Aidan Pollard

Brian and Caroline Giles, members of the Vineyard Conservation Society, welcomed volunteers to Lambert’s Cove Beach in West Tisbury with gloves and large white trash bags.

Lambert’s Cove too looked clean at first glance, but Mr. Giles said the trick is to comb through the woods off the trail leading to the beach and go behind the dunes.

Maya Suvarna and Dana Wallace join the effort at State Beach. — Ray Ewing

“Where you find stuff is behind the dunes,” he said. “If you look with a keen eye, a little glit here, a little glit there, you’ll find stuff,” he said.

A steady trickle of people of all ages arrived throughout the morning. Many raised a gloved hand to wave hello and good morning to their fellow volunteers. Volunteers collected trash to the sounds of waves gently lapping on the shore and birds chirping. The salty smell of the ocean filled the air.

“Watch out, watch those waves!” a young girl told a fellow volunteer standing close to the water’s edge.

“We’re lucky to have a beautiful day. It could rain and sleet, so we’re very fortunate to have a day like today,” Ms. Giles said.

Shotgun cartridges, socks, fish netting and plastic forks were all among the items found. Not everyone had to dig deep to find trash: one woman picked up a roughly 12-foot-long wooden plank on the shore and placed it next to the trash can at the entrance to the beach.

“It’s a treasure hunt,” Mr. Giles said.

There were learning opportunities for the kids in attendance.

“Grab that piece of styrofoam,” a dad said to his daughter.

“What’s styrofoam?” the girl asked.

“It’s like a piece of plastic,” he responded.

— Zach Harris

At Squibnocket Beach in Chilmark, a group of hardy April surfers rode the waves. The father-daughter pair of Colin and Celeste Ewing joined Squibnocket Farm property manager Jay Walsh on the beach. Mr. Ewing laughingly named Corona the beer of choice at Squibby, collecting not only empty bottles but a full one that he emptied before putting it in his collection sack.

Felix Neck volunteers were treated to a barbecue after cleanup was done. — Ray Ewing

The parking lot in Menemsha was buzzing with activity, from fish market patrons to tour buses. At the far end of the parking lot, a Vineyard Conservation Society sign-in sheet and collection sacks were available on the folded-down back end of a truck. On the beach and in the dunes above it, people walked in pairs or as groups of three to four people, sacks in hand.

Larissa Rich brought an Earth flag and hung it from the lifeguard stand.

At Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary in Edgartown, family groups turned up and stayed to enjoy a barbecue after the beach cleanup. Children frolicked.

Sanctuary staffer Paul Bagnall had seen a lot of small styrofoam balls blowing or stuck in the sand on the beach that morning. He followed the trail to a styrofoam block about three feet long. He and volunteers cleared it away.

By afternoon, the block and other full collection bags awaited disposal at the property’s edge.

— Elizabeth Bennett

More pictures.