Klamath Falls, Ore. – Second and fourth graders in Lake and Klamath Counties are helping to prevent wildfires through a special contest, with an artistic approach at fire prevention.
This is the 22nd year the Oregon Department of Forestry has sponsored the poster contest.
“I drew a picture of the woods burning,” explained Jorge Aguirre of Bonanza Elementary. “And on the side, I put what is the right thing to do, and what is the bad thing to do.”
Nick Wilson of Shasta Elementary has one of the top prize winners, which asked: “What can you create with 10 matches…and what can you destroy with just one.”
“I just thought that if people played with matches, they could cause a forest fire if they’re camping,” said Wilson.
The winners were chosen from over 260 entries.
Claire Igou is from Keno Elementary. She said, “I seen a lot of these signs, so I decided to make a ‘no matches’ sign.”
In addition to prizes, winners had a cake and punch party with Smokey Bear.
The top entries are made into placemats, which will be featured at local restaurants throughout fire season.
It’s estimated that over 16,000 kids in Klamath and Lake Counties have been involved with the poster contest since it began in 1995.
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.