SPARKS — Some wearing planting gloves and smocks, 48 elementary students busily dug holes into the blue-painted brick planter boxes in front of Alice Maxwell Elementary School Friday in celebration of Earth Day.
“The project is amazing,” said student Collin Rogers, 10, a fifth-grader who was busy planting a salvia. “We’re helping the environment by repopulating the plants and trees and the environment. I just kind of want to help out and repopulate the plants.”
The 42nd Earth Day will be held on Sunday this year. The idea is to promote environmental education and elevate the importance of environmental issues. This year’s theme, “Mobilize the Earth,” according to www.EarthDay.org, is about uniting people of all nationalities and background to voice their appreciation for the planet and demand its protection.
“Together we will stand united for a sustainable future and call upon individuals, organizations and governments to do their part,” the website stated.
Brita Tryggvi, Deputy Director at Nevada State Office of Energy attended the event to represent the Governor’s Office. Gov. “Brian Sandoval used to play here at this school,” Tryggvi said, referring to when the governor was a young student who played sports.
“It’s very exciting for our students and our school to be recognized by not only Home Depot but by the Governor’s Office,” said Denise Dufrene, principal of the school.
The school were supplied the dirt and perennials for planting and given help by volunteers from Home Depot as part of a donation from Home Depot and Scott’s Vendors.
“(The students) are very into this project” said Dufrene. “They’re very proud of their school. It adds something extra for them to be proud of.”
Eight varieties were planted along the front of the school Friday. Some of the plants included junipers, lavender and salvia. All plants are expected to bloom again each year, creating a colorful entryway for the school.
“My group — they were great,” said Home Depot Store Manager Bob Osborne. “They got it just like that. When I told them, ‘Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty,’ it was on!”
Parents and Home Depot volunteers were wrist deep in the newly laid dirt, showing the students just how far to dig for each plant and helping them use tools to properly place each perennial.
“It’s good for the environment and it makes the Earth green,” said student Aracelyn Lopez, 12, a sixth-grader who planted irises. “It will be a good thing to see what we did.”