Local youth project to be recognized nationally
SEEDS Youth Corps, which provides after school programs in 12 area schools — including Suttons Bay — will be presented the award at a ceremony in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 15.
The project, entitled “Full Circle Black Locust,” involved removal of the black locust from the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore where they are considered an invasive species. The wood was milled and used for construction of a boardwalk on South Manitou Island and a walk through ecologically-sensitive areas in the Leelanau Conservancy’s Teichner Preserve in Cleveland Township.
The heavy, durable wood is extremely rot resistant and has been used by years by farmers as posts.
“Not only are we creating jobs that help young people understand exactly what it takes to turn a tree into lumber and how to turn lumber into a boardwalk, we are replacing the need to purchase lumber that was kiln-dried, dipped in a toxic chemical bath and shipped from the West Coast,“ said SEEDS director of youth development Bill Watson.
Last year, SEEDS with the National Park Service and other conservation groups and dozens of Youth Corps Members, placed nearly 50,000 board feet of lumber and distributed 1,200 fence posts.