In recognition of Earth Day approximately 360 first, second and third grade students could be found touring the Tillamook Transfer Station on Friday, April 21. “I’ve worked with Ms. Travis at Liberty for the last couple of years to schedule trips for her first grade students,” states Sue Owens, Tillamook County Outreach and Education Coordinator, “but this year, we extended an invitation to all Tillamook County first thru third grade students.” South County students were invited to tour Pacific City Transfer Station as well as have a visit with Nestucca Valley Sanitary Service and see their garbage truck. North County students had the option of visiting Manzanita Transfer Station and one of their area haulers and truck. “The plan was to let the students see what happens with their personal garbage and recycling in their neighborhood,” states Owens. Thirteen classes in Tillamook took advantage of the offer.
It was a revolving door at the transfer station as the busloads of students arrived and were greeted by Owens and her team of tour guides and helpers. Aaron Averill, who manages the transfer station and his employee, Tyann Walker gave the official tours, while Master Recycler, Steven Kershaw and Owens helped out. Also on hand with his garbage truck was Ron Walker from City Sanitary Service who demonstrated the complexity and power of the compacting truck and pointed out safety features as well.
The hour long tour took the students around the entire transfer station offering close up views of the tipping floors, metal shed, baler, recycling station and the scales as well as the variety of machinery used in each area. Students had a chance to recycle items they brought with them and each class was weighed to see how they measured up. “People don’t think of this as a fascinating field trip destination, but it really is interesting to see up close what happens here,” states Owens, then adds with a smile, “I think every student learned something new, even those that had been here a “million” times.” Even the weather cooperated making it a fun and educational day.
If teachers are interested in more information on a 2018 Earth Day trip, they are encouraged to contact Owens at 503.842.3419 x 3104 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. “I hope next year more schools will participate.”