State Senator Arthur Orr (thrd from left), R-Decatur, presented a $25,000 Community Improvement Grant to the Alabama Mountains, Rivers and Valleys RC&D Council on Dec 2. Accepting the grant, from left, are Jay Grantland, education coordinator for Waterworks Center for  Environmental Education, Bill Latimer, AMRV-RC&D  chairman and Mike Roden, AMRV-RC&D executive director. | Clif Knight
State Senator Arthur Orr (thrd from left), R-Decatur, presented a $25,000 Community Improvement Grant to the Alabama Mountains, Rivers and Valleys RC&D Council on Dec 2. Accepting the grant, from left, are Jay Grantland, education coordinator for Waterworks Center for Environmental Education, Bill Latimer, AMRV-RC&D chairman and Mike Roden, AMRV-RC&D executive director. | Clif Knight

Archived Story

Waterworks receives grant for tree canopy

Published 2:08pm Friday, December 6, 2013

The Alabama Mountains, Rivers and Valleys RC&D Council, a non-profit organization located at the Waterworks Center for Environmental Education on Hwy. 31, North of Hartselle. received a $25,000 Community Improvement Grant on Dec. 2 to construct a tree canopy addition.

The grant was presented by State Senator Arthur Orr, R-Decatur, in support of an exciting new outdoor education opportunity for students and teachers in Morgan, Madison and surrounding counties. On hand to receive the grant were Bill Latimer, District 3 commissioner for Limestone County and chairman of the AMRV-RC&D Board; Mike Roden, executive director of the board; and Jay Grantland, education coordinator.

Roden said the tree canopy would be constructed in a stand of trees behind the Waterworks Center. It will offer teaching stations, swinging bridges and a zip line. Construction is expected to be completed by spring 2014.

On wooded land provided by Hartselle Utilities, an elevated, canopy teaching experience will be constructed so that students can learn about the habitats and life cycles of the critters that live, work and play in the tree tops. The stations will be connected with swinging bridges where the student will walk while safely connected to steel cables overhead Studies have shown meaningful learning opportunities that are enjoyable and create lasting impact on students.

“Anytime we can help teach our children about our environment and their responsibility in it we are investing in the quality of life for the future for all,” said Senator Orr. “This also is an excellent opportunity for us to promote the eco-tourism to make Waterworks a destination for groups from all over Alabama.”

Latimer expressed his appreciation to Hartselle Utilities Board and Senator Orr for their tireless efforts to improve the quality of life in Morgan County and north Alabama.

“We are very fortunate to have such great support from our county and state elected officials and Hartselle Utilities,” Roden pointed out. “To us it’s all about creating challenging educational opportunities for the kids. cooperation and assistance from the community is making this area even more special.”

Roden estimated that 2,000 students have taken advantage of the environmental education opportunities offered at the Waterworks Center in 2013.

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