Community Agriculture Alliance: Skip the potluck — team build while getting dirty | SteamboatToday.com

Community Agriculture Alliance: Skip the potluck — team build while getting dirty

Suzie Romig/For Steamboat Today/

Community Ag Alliance

Those office potlucks can be fun for holidays, and happy hour get-togethers are OK once in a while. But why not shake it up a bit and try something new for employee or organizational team building?

What better way to get to know your coworkers or club mates than by planting trees or volunteering together for environmental projects?

The ongoing and partnership programs of Yampa Valley Sustainability Council need groups to help with everything from ReTree planting to serving on Zero Waste crews at special events. The work is more fun, beneficial and likely less caloric than those "same old, same old" group gatherings. The following are a few of the opportunities for team bonding.

■ Routt County Community Clean-up Day celebrates its 10th year for this half-day, outdoor service event set for May 21. Help clean up the community, while organizers make work rewarding with prizes and free lunch. Wear waterproof boots and bring a trash picker or grabber, if you can. For more information, email Heather Savalox at hsavalox

@co.routt.co.us.

■ YVSC partners with the Steamboat Free Summer Concert Series to set up, staff and break down the Zero Waste stations, so that these popular events do not become an environmental burden. Diverting items from the landfill requires a crew of as many as 20 people for each show, with each volunteer donating three hours. Volunteers still enjoy the music and socializing. Upcoming concert dates are June 24, July 2, 16 and 30 and Aug. 7. Other events in need of Zero Waste helpers include the Steamboat Marathon, June 5; Tour de Steamboat, July 23; and Wild West Air Fest, Sept. 3 and 4. If your group has never volunteered as zero heroes, YVSC staff can provide a short training. Or, attend the next Zero Waste Training from noon to 1 p.m. June 9 at the YVSC office.

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■ The YVSC ReTree Steamboat program, in its seventh year, has a small planting set for Wednesday, or sign up your group to help at the large community planting day Oct. 8 at Chuck Lewis State Wildlife Area.

Those who prefer to schedule volunteering according to their group's availability, should consider signing up with the city of Steamboat Springs, Routt County or Colorado Department of Transportation to adopt a portion of a city street, county road or state highway. Adopted roads are cleaned two to three times per year. To volunteer for the city's Adopt-A-Street program, which currently has a special need for help on Fish Creek Falls Road, email Sheila Weekly at sweekly@steam

boatsprings.net. For county roads, special needs are present on Routt County roads 14 and 129, email Geovanny Romero at gromero@co.routt.co.us. To adopt a local stretch of state highway, where 51 miles still need care, email Lisa Young at lisa.young@state.co.us.

YVSC has many other ways to get involved, from helping with a new plastic bag fee initiative to serving on the board of directors. To volunteer as a business, club, group or individual, visit yvsc.org/volunteer.

Suzie Romig is a staff member at Yampa Valley Sustainability Council.