KCCB hosts 10th annual EcoHarvest
By PAMELA GRANT
We only have one planet Earth, and it’s up to each of us to preserve and protect our planet. At this year’s 10th Annual Eco Harvest hosted by Keep Copperas Cove Beautiful (KCCB), dozens of volunteers worked to show attendees how important our world is and how they can help by doing their part.
This year’s Eco Harvest was held Saturday at the Copperas Cove Civic Center from 9 a.m. until noon. The family-friendly event was free and open to participants of all ages. Various volunteers taught participants about recycling, water conservation, and more. They also had hands-on activities such as making “seed cookies” out of recycled paper and showing kids how to make flowers, bird feeders, and other crafts out of bottles. Kids could also have their faces painted.
Zoomagination had animal shows at 9:30 and 10:45 where kids were taught about deforestation and respecting all animals. The Copperas Cove Noon Rotary Club served pancakes and sausages while supplies lasted.
“It’s exciting to have our 10th annual because we’ve seen the event grow from being super small and now it’s a large community event,” said Roxanne Flores-Achmad, KCCB Executive Director. “It’s a fun event, but we want them to learn about how they can actually get involved in their community and get involved in some of the projects that KCCB does as well as learning how to take care of the environment…having them enjoy themselves and learn stuff as a family is a win-win situation.”
Flores-Achmad said that her favorite thing is seeing the kids learn and, at future events or meetings, telling her what they learned previously and how excited they were about what they learned. She said that it’s important that they continuously educate the public and show people how to take care of the community.
Flores-Achmad said that this year they had more information geared towards adults and not just for the kids. One of the new adult-oriented groups this year was the Bell County Master Gardeners.
Glenn Melton, president of the Bell County Master Gardeners, said that the Eco Harvest was a good opportunity for them to reach out to the Copperas Cove community. He said that their group actually services all of both Bell County and Coryell County. The Master Gardeners work to provide high quality, relevant, research-based horticultural education through outreach, teaching, and demonstration projects. Melton said that the group helps answer questions like what grows best in our area and how to take care of what you grow. They teach about basic gardening and landscaping as well as how to control and prevent pests and diseases. Melton said that anyone is welcome to attend one of their meetings. The group meets every 2nd Wednesday at the Harris Community Center at 9 a.m.
Although most had fun visiting and learning about environmental awareness from the various booths, for many the most exciting part of the day was when Robert Trejo, owner of Zoomagination brought out a variety of animals during two shows.
During his show, Trejo showed off his Military Macaw named Frank, Peregrine Falcon named Twister, Colombian Red Tailed Boa Constrictor named Champ, and his Two-Toed Sloth named Yogi.
Trejo said that not enough people know enough about animals to care enough to do something to help them, so he made it his mission to teach about the animals. By bringing his animals to the show, it makes his message more real for his audience.
“I want it to be fun, but I want them to learn that animals share our world,” said Trejo.
He wanted the audience to look at animals differently, including the animals in their own backyard. He hoped they would gain a respect for animals.
“The snake is pretty,” said Everly Wilson (4) after watching the animal show. “Yogi is pretty too,” added Everly, referring to the two-toed sloth.
Everly said that the snake felt pretty, but that the sloth was still her favorite animal in Saturday’s show. She had her own stuffed three-toed sloth that she brought with her to the show. During the show she learned that two-toed Sloths only go to the bathroom once a week.
Everly attended the event with her mother, Ashley Wilson. Wilson said that this is their second year attending the Eco Harvest
“She’s excited, she loves sloths, so she was excited that Yogi was here,” said Ashley Wilson.
Wilson said that she loved the event and said that it was great for the community especially since it was something good for the kids to do.
“I think it’s great…It’s great to have the kids learning about recycling and learning about how we can preserve the world and the trees and everything,” said Wilson. “That’s what I liked about Zoomagination. He let all the kids know that you can’t cut down all the trees because then all the animals start losing their homes.”