The faculty and students at Mason High School like to show our appreciation to the supportive community who helped make the 2010 National Blue Ribbon School Award a reality for us. To that end, three years ago we created “Blue Ribbon Service Day” to repay our community, and it has become an annual event. On Thursday, November 7th, we spent the day cleaning up what needs to be cleaned and sprucing up what needs to be “spruced!” Groups of students supervised by faculty members fanned out all over Mason County to make a difference. The following is a summary of what we accomplished.
We helped clean out and organize the fire station building. We also washed ambulances for the Mason County EMS Department. We made 53 chicken noodle casseroles and delivered them to the Mason Food Bank. We planted 10 trees on the elementary playground. We sorted three and one half tons of trash at the City of Mason Recycling Center. We painted the pipe and cables leading along the road to the Puncher Dome at Fort Mason Park. We cleaned gravesites, cleared brush and picked up rocks at Gooch Cemetery. We raked, trimmed, hoed weeds, bagged many lawn bags, and hauled them to the trailer as we turned Lilly’s Garden at Elementary School into a lovely place to relax. We picked up trash around the community and painted posts out at the golf course. We swept walkways, picked up trash, and cleaned the sanctuary and fellowship hall at First Baptist Church. We swept, scrubbed, cleaned, and organized the concession stand the baseball fields, and we deep cleaned the concession stand at the Puncher Dome.
At the Mason Tennis Center we put windscreens up on four courts and brought in dirt and leveled the grounds in the courtyard. At the Mason Clinic, we cleaned the rock wall on Post Oak Street. This area was so grown up with weeds and brush that it was decreasing visibility when leaving the clinic. We helped the city crews clear and haul brush along the park nature trail and along the park road to the baseball fields. We worked with Riata to remove the weeds from the track at Heritage Park, and we removed the grass and weeds from the sandbox at the park. At the baseball fields, we rebuilt the home bullpen, pulled weeds in the infield, and painted the dugouts. At the Young Life building, we spent the morning mowing, weed eating, painting, building trash can holders, vacuuming, and cleaning and repairing windows. (Gasp! We did a lot of work there.) At the St. Paul Lutheran church, we scraped paint and did the prep work for repainting at the thrift store and we washed windows at the fellowship hall. We began the renovation process of the Mason County Livestock Show Swine Barn. The old pig pens were removed to make way for the new pens to be installed for the 2014 County Stock Show
We worked at the CASA office, CASA doing general cleaning inside and outside, washed windows, set up and decorated the Christmas tree, decorated rooms and fireplace, and put up lights outside. We picked up a huge amount of trash and debris along the river at White’s Crossing. At the high school, we emptied all of the trophy cases, dusted the shelves and trophies, and put the trophies back in their cases. We also cleaned the library, book room, and store room. We cleaned out the flower bed in front of the high school, spread compost and planted purple blooming shrubs and flowers. We made some improvements to the sign at the track facility honoring Mr. Graham. We prepared over 100 hamburgers for the hungry workers and also cleaned up after lunch. We sanded and painted the wooden “Horseshoe M” we use for graduation and other special events. MHS We washed every window in the high school, cleaned the teacher’s workroom restroom, and we cleaned all the plaques on the walls. We even cleaned out Mr. Habecker’s refrigerator!
As usual, we had a great time, and we’ll do it again next year. A common theme among the faculty members was the absence of complaints. The teachers were impressed by how hard the students worked and the prevalence of such positive energy and “can do” attitudes. The students and teachers loved it, the community members who volunteered with us loved it, and most importantly, the people we helped loved it!