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Nashville District contributes to Earth Day celebration at Centennial Park

Nashville District Public Affairs
Published April 26, 2018
(USACE photo by Mark Rankin)

Pamela Backus, a park ranger from Old Hickory Lake Resource Manager’s Office with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Nashville District, talks with a young interested boater at the 16th annual Nashville Earth Day Festival at Centennial Park April 21, 2018.

(USACE photo by Mark Rankin)

Amber Jones, a park ranger from J. Percy Priest Lake Resource Manager’s Office and (right) Pamela Backus, a park ranger from Old Hickory Lake Resource Manager’s Office with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Nashville District, meet a family from Nashville at the 16th annual Nashville Earth Day Festival at Centennial Park April 21, 2018.

(USACE photo by Mark Rankin)

Amber Jones, a park ranger from J. Percy Priest Lake Resource Manager’s Office and (right) Pamela Backus, a park ranger from Old Hickory Lake Resource Manager’s Office with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Nashville District, meet two guys from Nashville at the 16th annual Nashville Earth Day Festival at Centennial Park April 21, 2018.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (April 21, 2018) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District celebrated Earth Day with thousands of energetic people today during the 16th annual Nashville Earth Day Festival at Centennial Park.

Metro designated April 21, 2018 as a citywide spring clean day and also hosted Nashville's annual Earth Day. The festival was a free, family-friendly day with children's activities, live music and a park full of environmental exhibits designed to inspire greener living and raise awareness about the environment.

Park Rangers and District Project Planning Branch staff talked to attendees as they visited the booth on boating and water safety, corps boundaries, the Corps’ Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration mission, as well as the important role the District plays with regards to Environmental Stewardship of our lakes and adjacent lands. 

The booth highlighted some of the up-to-date sustainable design features being incorporated into Corps projects District wide.   

Park rangers Pamela Backus from Old Hickory Lake and Amber Jones from J. Percy Priest Lake says they both enjoyed meeting and talking with people and making contacts that will help them spread the Corps’ water safety message.

“I’m having fun and this was a great idea and opportunity for the Corps to show others that we care about the environment just as much as they do,” said Backus.  

 At the start of the celebration, various speakers addressed the crowd and reminded everyone of their continued duties to keep Nashville green. 

“With a large presence of parks and outdoor recreation that our lakes provide, this is a great opportunity for us to make a difference by educating the public about ecosystems restoration, environmental stewardship, and preservation of our Corps recreation areas,” Backus added.  “It is also an opportunity to promote recreation, and water safety by reminding people to wear their life jackets when boating.”

The event featured exhibits and activities aimed at educating everyone about protecting our environment.   The environmental friendly festival also drew environmentalists of all ages to hundreds of family-friendly eco booths, hosted by government agencies, environmental organizations, and community groups who provided t-shirts, cups, pencils and goodies for all ages.

The event other featured exhibits, activities and performances through the day, live music and dance from the Global Education Center, Mr. Steve the Music Man and The Motet.  All specifically aimed at educating attendees about protecting the environment and sustainability. 

More than 100 nonprofit organizations and environmentally friendly businesses manned booths on recycling, waste reduction and energy water conservation.  Recycling & Disposal Drop-off bins were placed in locations to dispose of usable clothing, shoes and books, used or expired pharmaceuticals.

Melissa Andrews, a resident from Smyrna, Tenn., stopped by the Corps booth and talked with rangers about land boundaries, gathered a couple of area maps and picked up a free Frisbee.  

"I’m glad you’re here,” said Andrews.  “It’s good to see Corps representatives out here talking to us about the Environmental stewardship and the Ecosystem Restoration mission and this allowed me to talk with a ranger and gather some important information that I would usually have to call someone to ask.

The Cumberland and Tennessee rivers are vital to Tennesseans.  The Corps believes that if we take care of the environment, it will take good care of its residents.   Jones, said the Nashville Earth Day has been a great communication tool for the Corps to provide the public with information about the environment.

“It’s good the Corps supports events like the Earth Day Festival,” said Jones. “It enables us to talk to variety of people and it reminds us of the Corps mission.”

For more information about Environmental stewardship, Water Quality, Water Management, How the Cumberland River System works, and Educational Series Overview visit: http://www.lrn.usace.army.mil/Missions/WaterManagement/EducationSeries.aspx.