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On Oct. 27, the Cedar Key School picked up roadside litter for the first time as part of the State’s Adopt-a-Highway program. Sue Penney heads up this program for the school. Eight students, all of whom are Student Government Association members, volunteered along with two teachers and four Energy Advisory Panel (EAP) volunteers. All the volunteers participated in the required safety program that was provided by Karen Webster from the Florida F.D.O.T.
Miss Karen was very helpful in getting this project started and she is very impressed with the community spirit and the sense of community that Cedar Key has. An example of this is that the Cedar Key Pirates purchased orange safety vests and trash picker-uppers and donated them to the school for this program. "ARRGG" to the Pirates for that.
The school's stretch of Route 24 is from the No. 4 bridge to Second Street. The Florida Department of Transportation will be installing a sign at each end that says the Cedar Key School has adopted this section of Route 24. The participants collected nine fullbags of trash, a milk crate, a cooler lid, two Ford hub-caps and two old trash cans. Some people sure can make a mess.
But here is the real payoff with this program: EPA studies show that students who participate in a Adopt-A- Highway program do not litter. Better yet, there is a multiplier effect: Students also encourage friends and family members not to litter. It has also been shown that these volunteers will carry this lesson for life.