Festival highlights 'need for life changes'
By JOHN A. WINTERS
High-school students were out in force this past Saturday to promote public awareness on the importance of reducing ecological footprints.
The event was the fifth annual Greater Greener Newnan Festival, which was held at Ashley Park. Besides checking out various environmental displays, guests got to listen to live bands throughout the day.
”I represent the human embodiment of green,” said Tree, or Mr. Tree, who looked like, well, a tree. “I am standing like a tree should, not burned down or destroyed.”
Tyler Fuller, a Northgate High School student, was coordinator of the art and sculptor contests.
”We are trying to raise environmental awareness,” Fuller said. “The contest displays show why the earth should remain. Others show what the impact is on the environmental if we keep doing what we’re doing.”
All of the local high schools have joined with Coweta Performance Learning Center for this year’s event. The goal of the learning center is to help students give the community the information and tools they need in order to reduce their ecological footprint. Students provided recycling tips, conservation ideas and displayed products that are energy efficient.
”We are really turning our focus on the educational value of the games and exhibits this year,” said Polly Haugen, facilitator for the learning center. “We want to make a lasting impression on our visitors, increasing awareness of the need for life changes.”
Throughout the event, visitors also got to hear some great live music, courtesy of the students of Dr. Lyn Schenbeck and Doug Kees.
In the art contest, first place went to Dongeum Kim, a twelfth-grader at Northgate High, taught by Ron Almand. Honorable mentions were Jehrica Carney, Northgate High, 12th Grade, with teacher Almand; and Savi Knight, grade 11, Northgate High, teacher Lisa Middei.
In the sculptor contest, first place went to Shayna Healy, an eleventh-grader at Northgate, taught by Middei. Honorable mention went to three students from Newnan High School taught by Jodie Hobbs: Kerrie Head, Rebecca Barron and Christi Diaz.
Also Saturday, Keep Newnan Beautiful held an electronics recycling event. The electronics will be taken to the processing center of IMS in Decatur, where they will be sorted for reuse if possible and given to non-profit or charitable groups.
Initially funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Performance Learning Center is now a part of the Central Educational Center charter. Students at PLC can take advantage of the unique opportunity to earn back credits at a faster rate than normally afforded in a regular school setting.