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Give Weeds, Trash The Boot For Earth Day

Students observe flowers grown in the Jackson Memorial Greenhouse at Columbia High School during the School Garden Symposium on Earth Day back in 2014. (Enterprise file photo)

Students observe flowers grown in the Jackson Memorial Greenhouse at Columbia High School during the School Garden Symposium on Earth Day back in 2014. (Enterprise file photo)

As part of Earth Day celebrations, a trash clean-up, weed-pull and Boot Brush Kick-Off event is planned for 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 22, at the City of White Salmon’s popular stream corridor and urban-wildland natural area, Jewett Creek.

This event coincides with a Boot Brush Kick-Off at trailheads around the Gorge whose goal is to teach folks that recreate outside how to help prevent the spread of invasive weeds.

“We are so fortunate to have such a gem right in town,” said Jeanette Burkhardt, with Jewett Creek Streamkeepers. “City residents enjoy the parks and trails in our urban watershed—including Gaddis Park, Spokes Bike Park and trails along Jewett Creek —for relaxation, recreation, and connecting with nature. Native trout, steelhead, salmon and other wildlife also depend on Jewett Cr. year-round. Earth Day is a perfect day to give back by removing trash and weeds, learning about native plants and wildlife, and how we can all help to prevent spreading invasive species.”

Members of the public are invited to check in at one of two different stations along Jewett Creek on Saturday at 2 p.m. to take part in the clean-up: at Gaddis Park on Spring St., and at the west end of the parking area at Mt. Adams Fish and Game shooting range.

A boot brush will be set up at Gaddis Park to demonstrate how to prevent the spread of weed seeds. Individuals, families or other groups are welcome to assist in picking up garbage, and identifying and pulling specific weeds along the trails and stream.

“Jewett Creek is an oasis in this community, valued by many, but sometimes taken for granted, too.” confirms Tova Tillinghast, district manager for Underwood Conservation District.

“Weeds and trash accumulate along the trails, and this event offers an opportunity to get together with neighbors and friends to support the natural resources that we all enjoy. It’s a great way to celebrate Earth Day,” she added.

Two other groups will be participating in advance of Saturday’s event: local Cub Scouts Pack 384 will take on weeding and trash removal in the lower Jewett Creek outdoor classroom on Monday, April 17.

This outdoor classroom has been used for decades by local 4th grade students learning about water quality, fish habitat, and the value of our watershed.

In addition, Becky Williams’ 4th grade class from WPS Intermediate School will come out to Gaddis Park on Friday, April 21, to learn about native and invasive plants, and to help clean-up and weed the greenspace.

“The clean-up at Jewett Creek is an educational, fun opportunity for students to apply classroom learning about watersheds, soils, and environments, and to perform a community service at the same time,” said Williams. We’re excited!”

For more information about the event, contact: Jeanette Burkhardt at 509-945-1617 or Tova Tillinghast at 509-493-1936.

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