In 2009, Art Jones knew Florida’s rivers needed help and started cleaning them up literally one rake at a time. Officially formed as a nonprofit in 2015, One Rake At A Time, Inc. has been on a mission to restore and preserve these endangered waterways.
To improve and sustain the ecosystem of Florida’s Nature Coast and its surrounding waterways for the benefit of marine life and the community around the Bay. To educate the community, or visitors, and other interested parties about this fragile ecosystem and the best ways to restore, preserve, and protect it.
It started informally in 2009 when cleaning up Hunters Spring Park was the class project for Leadership Citrus. In 2011, the Kings Bay Rotary Club adopted the project to aid in the efforts to restore Kings Bay. By 2015, the nonprofit was officially formed to carry out this important work. For years, this group worked tirelessly to keep Hunters Spring Park beautiful and healthy. Many community events were held and thousands of people volunteered over the years from students at the Environmental Academy, Duke Energy employees, various Rotary Clubs, and college students. This model of community restoration has spread to other communities and waterways throughout Florida now.
With the group Save Crystal River taking on the massive Kings Bay Restoration Project, One Rake At A Time is now focusing its efforts on the Rainbow River which is in need of a champion to advocate for its restoration. The goal is to ensure the Rainbow River is cleaned and protected for generations to come. By ensuring a healthy ecosystem dominated by native plants, invasive plants won’t overtake the river, thus removing the need for toxic chemical applications.