Laura LaMetterey: Earth Day is every day

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On any ordinary day, my friends and I practice good stewardship by loving our mother Earth and collecting any trash that gets passed by. Every day becomes a day to appreciate and care for our heritage and our future with the earth, through conscious efforts.

With this past Earth Day, the biggest international holiday, I celebrated the best I knew how and was grateful to be accompanied by my good friend, Amanda. We had taken it upon ourselves to become "official" by purchasing trash collectors or "nifty nappers" from Steve Green Co., a local business. Our collection device was a very resourceful "Colorado Waste Management" bin strapped to my skateboard with a leash to pull it along. Our mission was to collect as much garbage as possible along the core trail from Freshies down to Charlie's hole. The biggest goal was to retrieve trash at flood level, as the river would soon rise and sweep it all away. It took us the entire afternoon of collecting plastic grocery bags, alcohol and fast-food containers and cigarette butts to name a few things, along the river and bike path. By twilight, we had filled seven-plus garbage bags.

It was amazing to experience, firsthand, what two individuals could accomplish in a single afternoon. It certainly has inspired me to continue my deeds and also to bring the awareness level in the community to attention. If everyone in Routt County could take a few minutes of each day to pick up the trash they pass by, it would keep our valley looking beautiful and impacted less by humanity. Better yet, making sure the trash gets into a receptacle in the first place is enormous (it was unsettling how many beer cans from tubers we found). Leading by example is a great way to bring awareness to others. It is all of our trash, and we must help each other to help cut down human impact on our Earth.

As a young environmentalist in the Yampa Valley, I have a passion to keep the area I live and love beautiful. I consider myself an activist and am very excited about the possibility of organizing events for Earth Day in our community. Our children need this local, eco-awareness more than ever, and it starts on days like Earth Day. It sprouts with that one day, full of appreciation and care, and grows throughout the entire year, making Earth Day every day.

As an undergraduate student through Prescott College's community-based distance learning, I am studying Sustainable Community Restoration and Ecological Design. Every day I am appreciative of the Yampa Valley and its wonderful classroom, full of invaluable resources. Let's keep it that way; let's love and honor our mother.

Michelle M. Visocky

Steamboat Springs

I'm one of them

This is a comment on the "Faces without places" article in Tuesday's Steamboat Today. While I certainly applaud efforts made to provide affordable housing, I must mention that I am a single woman who has lived here 11 years. I don't make close to $47,240, and I think I'm pretty safe in saying that there are lots of single folks - men and women - who don't either. It's really getting harder and harder to stay here because of the cost of living, and that's a shame.

Laura LaMetterey

Steamboat Springs

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