Another successful Pennington SWCD banquet was held this past Tuesday at Redeemer Lutheran church in Thief River Falls. If you weren’t in attendance, I will give you my on-scene report.
I dislike acronyms so SWCD stands for the Soil and Water Conservation District. We are the people who help conserve your local natural resources while giving the people a local voice in how that conservation is attained. It is good, honorable work and my station in this entity is that I am an elected supervisor.
The banquet was really fun, even though it ended after my eight-thirty bedtime. We presented awards to our Outstanding Conservationists, Nathan and Samantha Lindholm. These two employ practices on their land that conserve resources to a degree that they really caught our attention and were so awarded.
Pam and Ted Bettin received our Rural Beautification awards for incorporating landscape and conservation on their property. They used thoughtful, creative practices that make their home a pleasant place to live and more beautiful.
Both of these couple have a couple things in common; work and more work. I know for a fact, the kind of work that garners awards like these is hard but ultimately rewarding and very sustainable. Congratulations to all of you.
We ate a fantastic meal that night and enjoyed another great program produced by the SWCD staff which featured Kathy Erickson and her daughter, MaryJo Sturman. Lisa and I talked with MaryJo after the banquet and shared the memories stirred by their music. I wish my dad could have been there, he would have loved it.
Greg Hilgeman served as an excellent master of ceremonies. I really enjoyed his short reminder of the importance of planting trees. Trees hold back wind, their roots anchor the soil and even a single row can make a nice home for wildlife. The Pennington SWCD is known for selling and planting trees along with matting to suppress grass and weeds in between rows of trees. We’ve lost an awful lot of trees in the last decade and every tree row and living snow fence is needed-even if they need a few years to grow-this spring would be a good time to get started.
We had a nice group of youngsters at Tuesday’s banquet. Some nice, local sponsors help us produce a poster and mural contest. Winners of the poster contest get their creation screen-printed onto a t-shirt which is one of the coolest ideas I have ever seen. Everyone talks about how nice the printed t-shirts look and the contest really brings out the next generation and keeps things lively.
We ended the night with door prizes and Lisa won a black hill spruce which I asked her to plant somewhere close to water as trees sometimes need a little water as they acclimate to their environment. I had already eaten all available cups of mints/peanut combinations even though I was stuffed so there was nothing to do but head home. Thanks to everyone who helped create or attended this years Pennington SWCD banquet-you made it great.