Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful has been invited to receive a thank you presentation from students at Thomas J. Rusk Elementary. The presentation will take place on Thursday, Jan. 26, at 9:30 a.m. at the TJR Garden at the intersection of N. Fredonia St. and Arnold St.

Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful awarded an education grant in the amount of $400 to support the gardening project at TJR Elementary. The garden is operated by volunteers from Resilient Nacogdoches. Students in the gardening program apply various principles from the Learn, Grow, Eat, Go curriculum developed by the Texas A&M County Extension Office. Objectives include planting, harvesting and sampling vegetables.

“Its wonderful to see all the ways that folks are showing up to support school gardening programs,” said Jocelyn Moore, Resilient Nacogdoches member. “The grant money that KNB awarded to the garden programs at TJR and Carpenter Elementary Schools, as well as the high school, will go a long way to provide quality gardening tools, infrastructure and cooking equipment for the students,” Moore said. “I am proud to live in a city that values teaching its students how to grow their own food and the importance of eating fruits and vegetables.”

 TJR Elementary was one of six schools in Nacogdoches County to be awarded an education grant from KNB. Other schools that received grants are Emeline Carpenter Elementary School, Mike Moses Middle School, Central Heights Elementary and Nettie Marshall Academy of Dual Language. Two projects were funded through KNB grants at Nacogdoches High School.

“All of the grant recipients are creating gardens or implementing recycling programs this year,” Katie Blevins, KNB Executive Coordinator, said.

“Recipients of KNB grants create beautification, litter management and waste reduction projects throughout Nacogdoches County,” said Cheryl Bartlett, KNB board member, “They involve kids and teach them how to improve the quality of the environment in their own community.”

Any pre-K through grade 12 classroom or campus in Nacogdoches County, public or private, was eligible for a grant. Qualifying applications featured beautification and/or education projects that align with one or more of Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful’s core values: litter prevention, beautification, community improvement, waste reduction and resources, conservation, recycling and environmental education.

Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful is a 501(c)3 nonprofit, volunteer organization that promotes beautification, waste reduction and litter prevention through individual responsibility across Nacogdoches County. Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful is a local affiliate of Keep Texas Beautiful and Keep America Beautiful. More information about Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful and the current programs can be found at keepnacbeautiful.org.

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Megan Whitworth is the former creative director of Texas Forest Country Living. Growing up in East Texas, Megan discovered her love of writing at the age of 11, writing song lyrics and poetry, which turned into essays and articles for publications around East Texas. She later added photography into the mix capturing Friday night football games, the latest fashion looks, and portraits of people around the nation. Megan enjoys karaoke, blogging, reading, and road trips. She resides in Lufkin with her husband, Ryan, and two cats, Felix and Lucy.