Environmental education at the EcoFest

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Messenger photos by Dedra Cordle
Hundreds of people throughout the region came out to the Town Center Park in Grove City on Aug. 6 to experience and enjoy EcoFest, an annual summertime event that promotes healthier living and the importance of preserving the environment. Among the dozens of local agencies, businesses, and organizations educating and entertaining the masses were the Gardens at Gantz Park volunteers who were giving away free herbs and plants and sharing their expertise on the benefits of backyard gardening. Here, volunteer Mary Ann Core lists the variety of herbs and plants that are harmoniously living together in this space-saving pod. In addition to sparking ideas for budding gardeners, this pod also served as an educational piece for children at the event as it teaches them how to tell time via the location of the herbs and plants. Both the placement of the herbs and plants within the pod and the sticky notes demonstrating the time on a clock were created by volunteer Lisa Feldman.
The Grove City-based bicycle shop, Heritage Cycles, brought a variety of bikes for riders of all experience levels to try. Here, Eli Graham, 2, tries to get his bearings on the Strider, a pedal-less bike that teaches children balance.
John Hines, a volunteer with the Southwest Franklin County Historical Society, gives a few pointers to Madison Lallathin, 7, as she bravely attempts to walk using wooden stilts during the event. Hines said these items were used in the 1700s as a way to teach children coordination.
Eva Blackstone, 4, navigates an obstacle course within the event’s health and wellness zone. The course was designed by employees with The Fitness Movement to promote fun ways children can get active without leaving their backyards.
Siblings Devan and Delmont Diles jostle for position as they play on an electrical snap circuit. The popular snap circuits were provided by the Ohio Energy Project to teach children about electricity and other alternative sources of power.

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