It’s not quite enough to say Lady Bird Lake is an Austin icon, because Austin simply wouldn’t be Austin without it. The lake is an inescapable part of being an Austinite—it’s where we go for kayaking, canoeing, and fishing. It’s the heart of the Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail and the home to the world-famous South Congress bat colony. It’s one of the city’s most visited sites, attracting tens of thousands of visitors annually.
Meet Mike Valescu, professional volunteer, with over 23 years in the industry. He is an expert in volunteering around Austin, especially with Keep Austin Beautiful. If you’ve joined us for Clean Sweep, volunteered to mulch around Mable Davis Park, or participated in a custom service project with your coworkers, most likely you have worked with Mike.
“Less talking and more doing,” are words of wisdom from Jaime Rodriguez. Many people may spend their entire lives trying to live by this motto. Yet, Jaime a senior at Lanier High School not only subscribes to it, but puts it into practice.
Counting the ways he models being a Keep Austin Beautiful Green Teen at his school would be exhausting. While most kids his age are navigating being a teenager, Jaime was busy contributing over 75 hours to green-themed service projects and activities last year.
Friends of Tannehill Branch Creek have made some interesting acquisitions over the past year. Some of it is not so useful—like the plastic children’s beds, weed wackers and carpets they pulled out of the creek—but what was gained was a more connected community and a more beautiful green space. The once litter-ridden creek is now a uniting force for the neighborhood, sparking a movement to make the it a friendlier place to walk, bike, and live.
Austin is kept beautiful by the efforts of community volunteers who are dedicated to protecting and improving the local environment. Friends of South Zilker Park know a thing or two about creek restoration, and Keep Austin Beautiful is excited to recognize the group’s continued efforts with the Visa Beautification Award!
In 2040, kindergartners who start school today will be 30 years old! They will be teachers, engineers, doctors, and city council members. They will be Generation Zero – Austin’s first generation to grow up with and implement comprehensive zero-waste strategies, diverting over 90% of waste from local landfills, reducing consumption of non-renewable resources, and living in a greener city than any of us can currently imagine. Those lofty goals start with simple actions which everyone can start to implement this school year.
On Tuesday, July 12th, the Friends of Givens Park officially adopted Tannehill Branch Creek and the surrounding Grow Zone, becoming our 100th Adopt-a-Creek group! With dogs in tow, the Friends walked along the creek, discussed possible projects, and made a long-term commitment to dedicate their time and energy to implement park and creek improvement plans.
Kids love the outdoors and nowhere can you see that better than in Clean Creek Campus. The program integrates STEM learning and is aligned with academic standards, but most importantly it engages students in a fun, interactive way to learn about factors affecting our local watersheds and take action to restore our watersheds.
Green Teens engages middle and high school students at nine local schools in weekly activities during which students identify problems and solutions, engage in service projects, and use digital technology to explore new questions and share their experiences.