City seeks volunteers for creek cleanup

By Shantarra Brown - Smith-Cotton High School

By Shantarra Brown

Smith-Cotton High School

Volunteers are needed on Halloween for a cleanup of Brushy Creek behind Starbucks on West U.S. Highway 50.

Mark Grose, of Sedalia’s Storm Water Department, said the city-sponsored cleanup is set for 10 a.m. to noon Saturday.

Mona McCormack, who teaches earth science, environmental science and astronomy at Smith-Cotton High School, has participated in the cleanups for eight years. The city and McCormack and her students previously have cleaned up Brushy Creek and the Pearl River north of town. There is a cleanup twice a year — one in October coordinated by the city and one in the spring led by McCormack.

McCormack said she enjoys the outdoors because it is calming.

“It makes me feel like I am part of the environment and not separate,” she said. “It’s healthy and fun.”

She encouraged students to participate in the cleanup because she thinks it helps them understand how their actions have consequences. When they see the amount of trash that accumulates in the stream, it helps them understand everything they throw on the ground doesn’t just disappear – it goes somewhere.

The number of students that help out in the spring varies from five to 20. McCormack is not only encouraging the students to participate, but the staff at Smith-Cotton as well.

“It’s the right thing to do for the environment, future and wildlife,” she said. “Plus it makes you feel good to know you did something good for the planet.”

This experience has been fulfilling for McCormack, although she is saddened by the amount of trash that shows up in the stream every year.

“I wish we were better species,” she said.

Grose has participated in the cleanup for a couple of years and said, “It is a rewarding experience.”

For more information about the cleanup, contact Grose at 827-7830.

Rookie Reporter Shantarra Brown is a student at Smith-Cotton High School.

Rookie Reporter Shantarra Brown is a student at Smith-Cotton High School.

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