Boy Scouts gather old Christmas trees

Copyright The Wyoming Tribune-Eagle, January 10, 1999, p. A3

Used with Permission
Troop 101 Home Page
Hordes of Christmas trees disappeared from the streets of Cheyenne Saturday, but it wasn't because of anything too mysterious.

Four troops of Boy Scouts, their adult leaders and several other volunteers combed the city for curb-side remnants of the holidays.

In just three hours, the 60 volunteers collected 471 trees. With a smile on his face, Scout Kyle Mitchell said he loved the thrill of the hunt.

Other Scouts, like brothers Andy and Brett Adams, explained not only did they get out of housework, they also racked up community service hours.

The Boy Scouts of America pledged to donate 200 million hours of community service by the year 2000, Brett said. That works out to about one to two hours a month per scout, he added.

The Adams' father, David, is their Scout Master, as well as the facility manager for Laramie County School District 1. He got permission from the district to use a flatbed truck to help in the effort.

As the truck rambled up and down streets near Holiday Park, he and the boys looked right and left for trees that might be hiding behind cars. Distinguishing between juniper bushes and the trees was tricky at times.

The senior Adams said that this was one project among many that his troop would tackle this year. Others include planting trees, picking up litter and collecting food.

The City of Cheyenne coordinated the tree-recycling program, and the Scouts provided the volunteers, Solid Waste Engineer Kevin Sherrodd said. The city likes to get volunteers involved, he said.

The program keeps the trees out of the landfill and gets people thinking about recycling and the compost facility, Sherrodd said.

The trees will be ground up into mulch, which will then be sold. "It's good for evergreens," Sherrodd said.

Aside from the serious satisfactions like recycling, many of the boys from Troop 102 said they had fun Saturday.

After a brief snowball fight at Alta Vista Elementary School, the boys and their folks dusted off their gloves and called it a day.