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A youth program sponsored by West Virginia environmental regulators will award close to $15,000 in cash awards to groups across the state for their conservationist efforts.

West Virginia Youth Environmental Program member groups include 4-H clubs, scout troops, schools and other youth organizations, who complete projects like stream monitoring and cleanups, recycling drives and environmental education.

Youth Environmental Program groups worked over 20,000 hours during the past year to recycle more than 13,000 pounds of aluminum, 39,000 pounds of plastic, 51,000 pounds of steel and 49,000 pounds of paper, according to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, which sponsors the program.

The groups also planted 1,034 trees, more than 1,500 flowers and cleaned up nearly 75 miles of roadways in addition to community areas and streams. They also collected 255 bags of trash.

“Despite the many challenges they faced because of the pandemic, youth groups from around the state were still able to complete projects that made their communities and West Virginia a better place to live,” Youth Environmental Program Director Annette Hoskins said in a news release.

Program award winners are typically recognized during Youth Environmental Day at North Bend State Park. But this year’s event, scheduled for May 15, was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“[W]e certainly look forward to next year when we can all be together again at North Bend State Park,” Hoskins said.

The following individuals and groups received awards:

  • Rick Vecellio Memorial Scholarship — Lilly Claire Bias, Scott High School, Boone County
  • Bear Category First Place — Girl Scout Troop 4988, Roane County
  • Bear Category Second Place — Valley Livestock 4-H Club, Randolph County
  • Bear Category Third Place — Leon Luckies 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Cardinal Art Poster Award — Luke Thomas, Leon Luckies 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Cardinal Art Poster Award — Raven Hershman, Sandy Pals 4-H Club, Preston County
  • District 1 Coordinator Award — Sandy Pals 4-H Club, Preston County
  • District 2 Coordinator Award — Cub Scout Pack 32, Mineral County
  • District 3 Coordinator Award — Tacy Stickers 4-H Club, Barbour County
  • District 4 Coordinator Award — Hinton Helping Hands, Summers County
  • District 5 Coordinator Award — Bridge Creek Bandits 4-H Club, Putnam County
  • District 6 Coordinator Award — Lubeck Lucky Clovers 4-H Club, Wood County
  • DuPont Plastic Recycling Award First Place — Sistersville Nature Seekers 4-H Club, Tyler County
  • DuPont Plastic Recycling Award Second Place — Clover Stems, Putnam County
  • Environmental Achievement Award — North Fork 4-H, Pendleton County
  • Environmental Education Award — Meadow Bridge Clovers, Fayette County
  • Go-Mart Energy Essay Award — Ava Prior, Girl Scout Troop 1895, Fayette County
  • Go-Mart Energy Essay Award — J.D. Croucher, The Croucher Family, Hampshire County
  • Governor’s Beautification Award First Place — Wyoming East High School, Wyoming County
  • Governor’s Beautification Award Second Place — Haer Bears 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Governor’s Beautification Award Third Place — Schultz Ridge Runners 4-H Club, Pleasants County
  • Keep West Virginia Beautiful Award — Frametown Girl Scout Troop 38217, Braxton County
  • Keep West Virginia Beautiful Award — Girl Scout Troop 4988, Roane County
  • Litter Control Awards First Place — Girl Scout Troop 1895, Fayette County
  • Litter Control Awards Second Place — Hill Billie 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Litter Control Awards Third Place — Sandy Pals 4-H Club, Preston County
  • Maple Award — Malden Makes a Change, Kanawha County
  • Mountain Laurel Category Award First Place — Midway Getters 4-H Club, Preston County
  • Mountain Laurel Category Award Second Place — Belleville 4-H Club, Wood County
  • Mountain Laurel Category Award Third Place — Girl Scout Troop 1895, Fayette County
  • Mountain State Award of Excellence Category Award — Highland School Hawks Conservation Club, Ritchie County
  • REAP Adopt-A-Spot Award — Frametown Girl Scout Troop 38217, Braxton County
  • REAP Recycling Powerpoint Award — Wyoming East High School, Wyoming County
  • Recycling Award First Place — Letart Pioneers 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Recycling Award Second Place — Busy 4’s 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Recycling Award Third Place — Sand Hill Explorers 4-H Club, Wood County
  • Recycling Education and Awareness Award First Place — New Haven Elementary, Mason County
  • Recycling Education and Awareness Award Second Place — Winfield Scotts 4-H Club & Cloverbuds, Putnam County
  • Rhododendron Category Award First Place — The Croucher Family, Hampshire County
  • Rhododendron Category Award Second Place — Point Pleasant Jr. Sr. High School, Mason County
  • Rhododendron Category Award Third Place — Mountaineers 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Rick Vecellio Memorial Art Poster Award — Emmalea Warden, Haer Bears, Mason County
  • Rick Vecellio Memorial Art Poster Award — Emily Carothers, Meadow Bridge Clovers, Fayette County
  • Rick Vecellio Memorial Art Poster Award — Kameron Hart, Little Pioneers, Mason County
  • Rick Vecellio Memorial Art Poster Award — Jaidyn Patrick, Roadrunners 4-H, Mason County
  • Rick Vecellio Memorial Art Poster Award — Malea Bechtle, Mountaineers 4-H, Mason County
  • Save Our Streams Award — Harper Girls, Kanawha County
  • Streams & Trails Award First Place — Morristown Mountaineers 4-H Club, Wirt County
  • Streams & Trails Award Second Place — Boy Scout Troop 32, Hampshire County
  • Sustainable Forestry Poster Award — Gweneth Ashman, Girl Scout Troop 4988, Roane County
  • Watershed Protection Award — Harper Girls, Kanawha County
  • West Virginia State Parks Superintendents’ Association Awards First Place — Meadow Bridge Girl Scouts Troop 31897, Fayette County
  • West Virginia State Parks Superintendents’ Association Awards Second Place — Haer Bears 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Wildlife Management Award — Cow Creek Hi-Strivers 4-H Club, Putnam County
  • Youth Environmental Hall of Fame Award — Hunter Hershman, Sandy Pals 4-H Club, Preston County
  • Youth Environmental Hall of Fame Award — Kelsey Butcher, Frametown Girl Scout Troop 38217, Braxton County

Reach Mike Tony at mtony@hdmediallc.com, 304-348-1236 or follow @Mike__Tony on Twitter. 

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