RED PRIDE DAY: Newton Students Clean Community

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High school students in Newton traded in their books for work gloves for a lesson outside the classroom.   Red Pride Service Day started as a way for them to help their neighbors with a few projects.  It has turned into a day for the whole community to pitch in and clean up Newton.

“It was around the time Maytag was leaving and we were kind of in the doldrums and dumps and that`s how it started now it`s morphed into this giant day when all 800 students in the high school go out into the community,” says coordinator Alison Provin.

The Spanish teacher started Red Pride Service Day three years ago.  This year, students and volunteers in the community fanned out to work on 45 projects.  A few classes spent the afternoon planting flowers around the square.

“I think it`s really cool we get to just help our community out and we get out of school too that`s always fun,” says Emily Forsyth.

Even though they're out of the classroom for part of the day, Provin says her students are still learning.

“We hope by this they get that idea of giving back to the community and taking pride in the community and we have noticed that,” she says.

on 12:16:19 i hold on to all my trash because i see- it takes a lot of time to pick this stuff up 26

While some of his classmates spent their time painting murals or digging in the dirt,

Brandon Van Roekel got stuck with the dirty job of picking up trash in the ditch along the interstate.

“From what I found, yes I would probably be planting flowers or painting,” says Van Roekel.

But no matter the job.

“You take what you can get and if you can help, I say it’s worth it,” says Van Roekel.

Close to 1,000 people took part in today's service day.  All the flowers, paint and supplies were donated by the Newton business community.