Letters to the Editor

Posted: Wednesday, June 13, 2001

Youth Restoration Corps work to restore habitat

Starting on June 25, 90 youth from 10 different states will converge on Seward for one week, in an effort to restore habitat along a Kenai River tributary (Quartz Creek) while learning about Alaska and the environment. Hosted by Youth Restoration Corps and Young Marines, it was easy to choose Seward for the staging of this event. Beautiful surrounding mountains and water -- what says Alaska better?

Youth Restoration Corps, an Alaska-based nonprofit organization, has been involving youth in restoring habitat along our rivers and streams for the past five years. Three years ago we started involving other youth groups in our community restoration projects, where we take on a large project and invite other youth groups to participate, then celebrate the completion of the project by hosting a community barbecue. This allows sponsors and the community to come out to see the project and meet the youth.

Last year, a Young Marines Alaska unit helped out on a Kenai river project. So when we were asked by ADF&G to help out on the Quartz Creek coho rearing pond project, we invited the Young Marines on a national level to come up to Alaska to see our great state and meet the wonderful people and learn about the environment. The Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor has helped us arrange the use of Seward Middle School. The Seward fire chief has given us the green light, even the city mayor is going to provide some stories of Alaska. This is truly working out to be a great opportunity for these teenagers.

This project is being sponsored by our 120 partners and supporters nationwide, from the Chugach National Forest providing hands-on educational instruction, to corporate America contributing funds to help bring this to reality. Working together as a community, we can do just about anything for our nation's greatest natural resource -- our youth. I know from past experience as director of YRC that youth can move mountains if they are given the chance. So to the city of Seward and the Kenai Peninsula Borough, thank you in advance. This will make a lasting experience for our leaders of tomorrow.

The project location is Mile 39 Sterling Highway, near the Chugach Electric substation. We will be starting each morning about 9, Monday through Friday, with the barbecue scheduled for Friday at noon. Youth Restoration Corps would also like to thank all our supporters of this year's YRC projects, especially U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens, Alaska Sens. John Torgerson and Loren Leman, Borough Mayor Dale Bagley and (Ret.) Col. Mike Kessler.

The following sponsors also were instrumental in making this project a reality: U.S. Forestry Service Alaska Rail Road Corporation; Fish America Foundation; National Bank of Alaska; NMFS/NOAA Environmental Support Center; Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation; Kenai River Center; Department of Fish & Game; Romtec; Tesoro Alaska; Alaska Recreational Management; Unocal; Spenard Builders Supply; Alaska Conservation Foundation; Environmental Protection Agency; Polar Supply; Hertz car rental; Tanaina Corporation; Dean Davidson; CIRI Foundation; Dave Miller & Associates; Phillips Petroleum; Egge Governor Service; United Cook Inlet Drifters Association; Paul Gray productions; Veggie Barn; Cook Inlet Aquaculture Association; Mrs. Bettie Morris; Wasilla Soil & Water; America Honda Foundation; Alaska Wildline Adventures; American Rivers; BASS Inc.; American Fisheries Society; Trout Unlimited; Air-land Transport; Izaak Walton League; Salamatof Seafood; Central Paving Products; Salamatof Native Association; Department of Corrections; Ron's Rent it Center; Pacific Rivers Council; AA Dan's Construction; IAWFA; Alaskan View Motel; American Sportfishing Association; Coca-Cola Distributing; Gilman & Associates; Department of Transportation; Copy Works; Budget feed; U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service; Gama's Design Stake Shop Inc., John Trautner; ACS Mactel Wireless; Alaska Training Center; Alaska Young Marines; North American Green; Alaska Mill & Feed; R.H. Dyck Inc.; Alaska Pacific Forwards; Philip Morris Companies Inc.; Alaska Pipe & Supply; Ken Sides; Chugach Electric; BP Exploration; Sam's Club Inc.; Kenai Peninsula Borough; Kenai Peninsula Borough School District; University of Alaska Palmer Research Center; Carlile Transportation System; Fred Meyer; Salamatof Tribal Council; Alaska Sport Fish Recovery; Chubby Chicken Carpet Barn; Natural Resource Conservation Service; United States Coast Guard; Soil Dynamics Inc.; Agrium Inc.

We couldn't do it without you. Thank you.

If you would like more information, please call (907) 262-1032 and ask for Kelly Wolf.

Kelly Wolf, YRC director


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