Our jobs at the park take many forms. Sometime it is grunt work hauling and digging and trimming. Sometimes, it’s time spent with the patrons at concerts, hay rides or campfires. Sometimes, it’s work on projects we identify. No matter which form it takes, we find it makes the days go quickly. Our first 2 weeks certainly did.
And one morning, we got trained by our grandson, Droz, in boundary marking. The park marks trees on its boundaries with yellow stripes or metal signs. We had a rough start finding a good stretch to mark, but once we got started, we got the hang of it quickly. We had a good teacher.
“Please, no more stiltgrass. I’m having nightmares about it.” Nothing brings drama to the table like teenagers. Teen Volunteer Week began with 21 youth and a shifting number of adult volunteers who would guide them, many for their first time working in a park. From 9 to 2 each day, we would work on a project, then follow that with 2 hours of something fun. The youth weeded the CCC Museum garden, removed invasive species (lots of Japanese stiltgrass), cleared trails, repaired a walkway and even trailblazed a mile of a new mountain biking trail. The afternoons were spent tie-dying T-shirts, learning archery, canoeing, swimming at the pool, and fishing.
Over the course of the week, we got to know the kids, (which included Droz and Jayden) and enjoyed working with them as they learned how to make a difference a litte bit at a time.
On July 5th, we had a belated holiday celebration with Bonnie, Taylor and Troy arriving from Emporia and Droz and Jayden coming to spend the night. After some pool time, we had a picnic that included (of course) a campfire with s’mores.