SpongeBob Squarepants and Patrick cutouts on the wheel of Gwynnda the Good Wheel of the West
Two new cutouts are placed on Gwynnda the Good Wheel of the West. Photo courtesy of Waterfront Partnership

Gwynnda the Good Wheel of the West, one of Baltimore’s four trash wheels tasked with removing trash from waterways, has some new company on board thanks to a new partnership between the Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore and the SpongeBob Squarepants: Operation Sea Change initiative.

Nickelodeon and Paramount teamed up to create the initiative, aimed at helping to keep plastic out of the ocean and maintaining biodiversity in it. 

The initiative’s goal is to “remove and divert five million pounds of ocean plastic over the next four years,” according to the release. It says it will fund Gwynnda the Good Wheel of the West’s trash-collecting duties through 2023. 

“We’re thrilled that the Mr. Trash Wheel family — both his impact and innovation — resonated with Nickelodeon and Paramount,” Adam Lindquist, vice president of the Healthy Harbor Initiative at the Waterfront Partnership, said in a press release. “This adoption of Baltimore’s fourth Trash Wheel, Gwynnda the Good Wheel of the West, will fund the removal of over 500,000 pounds of trash and debris while educating children and families across the world about ocean pollution and how to stop it.” 

The other three trash wheels are named Mr. Trash Wheel, created in May 2014 and residing in the Jones Fall stream; Professor Trash Wheel, from Harris Creek since 2016; and Captain Trash Wheel, founded in 2018 in Masonville Cove. 

Cutouts of SpongeBob and Patrick, characters from the popular Nickelodeon children’s show “SpongeBob Squarepants,” have been placed on the wheel to show off the new partnership.

This is the second partnership that Baltimore’s trash wheels wheels have been part of. Pompeian Olive Oil, a Baltimore-based company, has sponsored Mr. Trash Wheel and Professor Trash Wheel since 2021. 

Gwynnda the Good Wheel of the West, which resides near Gwynns Falls, has been in use since 2021. The name was suggested by Baltimore resident Zachary Yarosz and selected through public voting. It’s a nod to Glinda the Good Witch of the South, from L. Frank Baum’s “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.”

Gwynnda the Good Wheel of the West is the largest of the four trash wheels, able to collect more trash in one year than the other three wheels combined. Together, the four trash wheels have collected more than 2,300 tons of waste since the first one, Mr. Trash Wheel, was installed in 2014.

On Operation Sea Change’s website, the Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore is part of the “first wave of environmental organizations and clean-up partners.” Other partnerships that Operation Sea Change has created include Surfers Against Sewage, the Coral Restoration Foundation, Plastic Oceans, and The First Mile. 

The partnership is “a brand-new, multi-year global ocean conservation and sustainability initiative.”

Jake Shindel is a summer intern for Baltimore Fishbowl. A rising senior at Towson University, Jake has held many positions within the campus newspaper, The Towerlight, and had a previous internship at...