March 14, 2012 - Students looking to spend spring break serving the community have several opportunities here at home.
Independence Township is planning a Clarkston Community Garden project, April 2-5.
"We hope families will sign up to volunteer a day together. Or, this is a perfect opportunity for students who need to complete community service hours for school," said Kelly Hyer, recreation supervisor for the township.
Volunteers will help finish a permanent fence, placing poles and mesh to keep deer and small animals out of 80 share gardens and two large community garden beds. Volunteers will also clear a space for bee hives.
"With the mild winter, we are anticipating perfect weather to work outside in during the break. Every volunteer will receive a t-shirt and complimentary lunch," said Hyer. "Any Spring Break volunteers will be giving us a 'jump start' for this summer's projects and it is a great way to connect as a community."
Volunteers are needed Monday-Thursday, April 2-5, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Call Independence Township Parks and Recreation at 248-625-8223 or download a form at www.itpr.org.
Volunteers can work one day or all four at the garden, northeast corner of Stickney and Pine Knob roads.
Clarkston Coalition for Youth is also offering "Spring Break Clarkston Style."
"Encouraging kids to stay home gives them the opportunity to give back to their community, develop themselves as individuals, understand what it means to be a healthy youth and better themselves as opposed to drinking and partying. That's not going to help their future," said Tonya Cunningham, community organizer for the coalition. "It gives them the opportunity to communicate and meet other individuals they wouldn't have met had they not participated in the event."
The coalition is reaching out to businesses, restaurants and organizations that will provide activities and discounts the week of Spring Break, April 2-6. After receiving 87 responses in on a survey sent out to residents, top activities included going to the movie theater, bowling alley, library, zoo and museums. Ninety-eight percent said they would go out for dinner during spring break week if they had a coupon.
Currently planned is a movie day at the Independence Township Library, a camp at Stars and Stripes Kids Activity Center, discounted teen and adult yoga classes at Yoga Oasis, discounted meals at Stir Crazy and a "packing day" for overseas troops hosted by the American Legion Auxiliary.
"This is all based off of what our mission is," said Colition President Rebecca McGovern. "Our mission is to 'increase positive youth development through community partnerships, providing every youth with the opportunity to reach their fullest potential.'"
Businesses interested organizing an activity or offering a discount can contact the Clarkston Coalition for Youth to Tonya Cunningham at email@example.com .
For more information on Spring Break, go to www.clarkstonyouth.org.
"The Clarkston Coalition for Youth is looking forward to rolling out Spring Break- Clarkston Style. This will be a great opportunity for our local youth and parents to participate in fun, safe activities here in Clarkston," said McGovern. "The Coalition is dedicated to making this an annual initiative; with great thanks to our local partnerships, we will be able to make Spring Break-Clarkston Style an ongoing success."
Trevor graduated with degrees in English and communications from Rochester College. He wrote for his college and LA View newspapers before joining The Clarkston News in May 2007.