April 29, 2011

Fort Pickett celebrates Earth Day with local community

By Staff Sgt. Andrew H. Owen
Virginia Guard Public Affairs

FORT PICKETT, Va. — The Virginia Army National Guard and the Fort Pickett Maneuver Training Center invited the public and employees at Fort Pickett to celebrate Earth Day April 22 to help educate the community on the many ways the agencies on and around Fort Pickett are acting to protect the environment.

 

Capt. Jaycee Shaver (left), Virginia Army National Guard environmental officer, speaks with Col. Tom WIlkinson, the Maneuver Training Center commander, during the Maneuver Training Center's annual Earth Day celebration April 22 on Fort Pickett. At the various displays the children were taught the importance of being good stewards of the environment and the important role the National Guard plays in maintaining the ecosytems surrounding their many bases and facilities across the country. (Staff Sgt. Andrew H. Owen, Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

Click HERE to see more photos from the event on the Virginia National Guard Flickr site.

“We offered the Earth Day program here at Fort Pickett to provide information to our employees, our staff and our community about some of the things we do here at Fort Pickett to promote environmental stewardship, as well as general Earth Day information,” said Donna Martin, Fort Pickett Department of Public Works.

The annual Earth Day event drew more than 80 students from Blackstone Primary School to view the 18 display areas at the event, some of which included interactive displays. Visiting students were greeted by Smokey Bear and McGruff the Crime Dog and visitors were each given a white pine seedling to plant in their yards. They also learned to make bricks out of compressed dirt and how to make their own earth-friendly charcoal. They were able to touch real local wildlife brought in by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries and a local animal enthusiast. Other displays taught students and visitors the children the importance of, composting, recycling, energy conservation, sustaining our renewable natural resources, and counter-drug education.

 

The Virginia Army National Guard and employees of the Maneuver Training Center welcome over 80 students from Nottoway Primary School to the MTC's annual Earth Day celebration April 22 on Fort Pickett. At the various displays the children were taught the importance of being good stewards of the environment and the important role the National Guard plays in maintaining the ecosytems surrounding their many bases and facilities across the country. (Staff Sgt. Andrew H. Owen, Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

Click HERE to see more photos from the event on the Virginia National Guard Flickr site.

“The kids are our future,” said Martin. “If we can pass on the importance of sustaining our environment to these younger generations, by the time they reach our age, hopefully, they will leave a better world.”

The Fort Pickett Environmental team had a display explaining the importance of Fort Pickett’s role in protecting its land and the wildlife that inhabit the area. According Capt. Jaycee Shaver, Virginia Army National Guard environmental officer, the Environmental Team spends a lot of time and resources  to protect the air and water quality in the area to make sure Fort Pickett and all the facilities in Virginia are safe to train on.

“Earth Day is every day,” said Shaver. “Today is our one day to celebrate. Not everyone can take time out of their busy schedule to do stuff like this all the time, but this is our one day to get everyone together to think about the environment.”

“You can always buy green; you can always do something; you can always educate somebody; you can always tell your story. It really is every day.”

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