Marietta celebrates Earth Day

MARIETTA – The Boys and Girls Club of Washington County has made sure to teach area children important lessons about taking care of the earth.

Matt Barton, program director for the Boys and Girls Club, said the activities, whether it’s just talking to the students or having them make posters, are teaching youth how to treat the earth properly.

He said activities planned for Saturday were directed at long-term work.

“(Local artist) Geoff Schenkel built concrete blocks for a garden,” he said. “We have been doing composting here, but he’s going to make the blocks and (the kids) are going to plant a garden. Eventually it’ll be a raised bed garden and we’ll use worms to break down composting. It started about a month and a half ago. (The kids) work a little at a time.”

Barton said in the afternoon a group from Washington State Community College were coming to take flowers the children potted to the Arbors at Marietta.

“(The group was to) give them on behalf of the kids from the Boys and Girls Club,” he said.

So far, the students have had talks about keeping the earth clean, made posters and colored Earth Day-inspired pictures.

Hailey Constable, 11, a fifth-grader at Putnam Elementary, said Earth Day is a way for people to come together.

“It celebrates that our earth is pretty clean and that everybody should work together to help keep the earth clean,” she said.

Third-grader Kyleah Schaffer, 9, also attends Putnam Elementary. She said her favorite part of recent activities was making posters about Earth Day. She said keeping the earth clean and stopping pollution is important.

“It’s the day we all come together and we have to keep (our earth) going and we have to stop pollution so we have air to breathe,” she said.

Makayla Grose, 11, a fifth-grader at Phillips Elementary, said she’s learned much from the activities.

“Earth Day is where everybody helps the earth, cleans it up and respects it,” she said. “We’re still learning about it.”

Barton said Earth Week had been an experience for the children so far.

“They enjoy it. The kids know a lot about it and it’s pretty neat just to see,” he said. “Every day should be Earth Day. We get to teach them to take care of (the earth).”

On Earth Day, which is Tuesday, Barton said he and the students will make a trek to Harmar Cemetery to spruce it up a little bit.

“They’re making a newspaper pot and then planting (the flowers),” he said, adding that the newspaper is biodegradable so the earth won’t be harmed by it. “We’re (also) going to clean up Harmar Cemetery. It’ll make it more significant for them.”