Klamath Falls, Ore. – Several hundred students in Klamath Falls gave their community a spring cleaning Thursday as part of ‘Give Back Day’.
The event gives students a clearer look at civic pride, and volunteering.
Business owner and City Council member Kendall Bell helped to coordinate the effort. “I am managing all of the projects that are downtown, mostly the K.U. students – which number about 500, we believe.”
Projects included cleaning up and planting at Sugarman’s Corner, and installing posts along a protected bike lane.
“It feels good.” Notes student Reynaldo Ortega. “Being able to help out the community, being able to work, Give Back Day – instead of being in class.”
Jacob Morris of Pelican Transitions helped to clean up at Veterans Memorial Park.
Students also sanded and put new coatings on downtown benches.
“We’re learning to help our community.” Student Airianna Harmon says. “And just do as many things as we can.”
Bell points out the event provides many lessons. “Civic pride, for sure – I think one of the things we lack in Klamath is a little bit of pride in our community, so this is a way to do that.”
The first Give Back Day in Klamath Falls was held in 2014, it has now become a community-wide event.
The city of Klamath Falls, the Downtown Association, Sky Lakes Medical Center, and the Blue Zones Project help sponsor the effort.
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970’s. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.Lyle’s job history is quite colorful.
He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90’s as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience.
“The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story”.
When he’s not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.