Attract Migrating Birds With Native Plants

Posted by on Apr 18, 2017 in News

(This content has been sourced from Audubon Native Plant Database) Nothing quite says spring like sprouting plants and migrating birds. By growing native plants, you will give birds the food and shelter they need, help fight climate change, conserve precious water resources—and see more birds in the process! Search our native plants database for the best native plants for your area. With new features like more bird customization, easier filtering of plants, and additional resources in your community, our database has everything you need for planting with birds in...

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Gardening to a Greener Community

Posted by on Apr 11, 2017 in News

April is National Keep America Beautiful Month, National Volunteer Month and National Garden Month. What better time to hone your gardening skills and volunteer on a community greening project than during a beautiful spring April here in The Natural State! The benefits to gardening are all around you. Keep reading for our top reasons why gardening is a worthwhile personal hobby and an essential part of your community’s sustainability. Our Community’s Livability Gardens bring people together to create socially connected communities. Studies suggest that crime rates are decreased when beautification efforts are increased. Not only does a garden make a space more aesthetically pleasing, it also fosters a sense of ownership, stewardship and personal success among the gardeners, increasing interest in other forms of community improvement. Image courtesy of www.dunbargarden.org Many types of gardens enhance a community’s liveability by adding more green spaces and filling in vacant lots and run-down properties. “Pocket parks” are becoming more popular in Arkansas as declining downtowns are revitalized and regenerated with activity. The Thad Kelly Courtyard in Helena, Arkansas, is a pocket park developed in the footprint where a buildling once stood, now providing a pleasant and colorful respite in the middle of downtown. Thad Kelley Courtyard. Image courtesy of Visit Helena, Arkansas Another type of garden that has seen a spike in popularity is the community garden. Typically devoted to growing edibles, these community (or “urban”) gardens offer opportunities for gardners to collaborate in cultivating quality, homegrown fruits and vegetables for their neighbors and local eateries. The Little Rock Urban Farming project is a great example of this type of urban garden. Courtesy of www.littlerockurbanfarming.com Community gardens are also used as outdoor classrooms to teach students creativity, planning and problem-solving – as well as empowering them with a lifelong hobby and skill. Dunbar Garden Community Project in Little Rock, cultivated by volunteers, is a prime example of an outdoor gardening classroom. “This whole place is our classroom,” one Gibbs Elementary student is quoted as saying on the Dunbar Garden’s website. Image courtesy of www.dunbargarden.org All of these gardens enhance a community’s liveability, provide green spaces where vacant lots once stood, create places of volunteerism, collaboration and education, and empower their keepers to create, cultivate and grow. Your Unique Opportunity If you think you’re ready to begin your community greening and gardening adventure, we can help! Through May, Keep Arkansas Beautiful is giving away gardening kits provided by Keep America Beautiful. This is the perfect time for you to test your green thumb. For more information and how to enter for the giveaway, visit Keep Arkansas Beautiful’s Facebook page. There are also many, many neighborhood and community cleanups and beautification projects scheduled through May across Arkansas during the Keep America Beautiful Great American Cleanup. Find one here and dig in to help keep The Natural State clean and...

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Thea Foundation gallery displays cleanup art

Posted by on Apr 6, 2017 in News

Artwork of Youth Poster Contest winners and honorable mentions will be shown April 10-14 NORTH LITTLE ROCK (April 6, 2017) – Student artwork conveying messages about keeping Arkansas clean and green will be displayed April 10-14 at the Thea Foundation gallery in downtown North Little Rock. The artwork includes winners and honorable mentions from the annual Keep America Beautiful Great American Cleanup in Arkansas Youth Poster Contest, promoted by the Keep Arkansas Beautiful Commission (KAB). A panel of judges chose the winning posters from 421 entries from 58 schools and school/youth organizations statewide. Winners in the Grades K-2 division are: First Place – Kalina Garza, a second-grader at St. Paul Schools in St. Paul (Madison County) Second Place – Shaylah Richie, a second-grader at City Heights Elementary School in Van Buren (Crawford County) Third Place – Remingtyn Richie, a kindergartner at City Heights Elementary School in Van Buren (Crawford County) Winners in the Grades 3-5 division include: First Place – Teagan Gabbard, a fourth-grader at George B. Ledbetter Intermediate School in Farmington (Washington County) Second Place – Avari Golden, a third-grader at Bismarck Elementary School in Bismarck (Hot Spring County) Third Place – Izzy Bailey, a fifth-grader at Episcopal Collegiate Lower School in Little Rock (Pulaski County) Students receiving an Honorable Mention from the judges include: Brooklyn Calico, a fourth-grader at St. Paul Schools in St. Paul (Madison County) Ana Castaneda, a fifth-grader at King Elementary School in Van Buren (Crawford County) Layton Dallas, a first-grader at De Queen Primary School in De Queen (Sevier County) Micaiah Hardage, a first-grader being homeschooled in Malvern (Hot Spring County) Heaven Ipina, a fifth-grader at Marked Tree Elementary in Marked Tree (Poinsett County) Dabney Lovins, a second-grader at Lakewood Elementary School in North Little Rock (Pulaski County) Danielle Pearce, a kindergartner at St. Paul Schools in St. Paul (Madison County) Madilyn Pearce, a first-grader at St. Paul Schools in St. Paul (Madison County) Elise Pinkerton, a fourth-grader at George B. Ledbetter Intermediate School in Farmington (Washington County) Kayden Price, a third-grader at Amboy Elementary School in North Little Rock (Pulaski County) Caleb Putnam, a third-grader at eStem Elementary School in Little Rock (Pulaski County) Patrick Sheehan, a fifth-grader at CATO Elementary School in Sherwood (Pulaski County) Each winner received a Walmart gift card sponsored by the Keep Arkansas Beautiful Foundation. A KAB Commission representative presented each winner with the gift card, his/her poster laminated and a certificate of achievement at a local ceremony, during the past few weeks. The Youth Poster Contest is part of the 2017 Keep America Beautiful Great American Cleanup in Arkansas campaign, the spring statewide community cleanup effort promoted annually by KAB, a certified state affiliate of Keep America Beautiful. The winning entries and honorable mentions are also posted on Facebook.com/KeepArkansasBeautiful.  About Thea Foundation The Thea Foundation, established in 2001, advocates the importance of art in the development of youth through...

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KAB celebrates volunteers, partners, House resolution

Posted by on Mar 24, 2017 in News

LITTLE ROCK (March 21, 2017) – Keep Arkansas Beautiful hosted an event yesterday in the Gardens of the Governor’s Mansion to honor the first day of spring, to thank the Arkansas House for passing Resolution 1004, and to celebrate the local coordinators and volunteers who will be cleaning up their communities during the Great American Cleanup in Arkansas this spring. Robert Phelps, executive director of the Keep Arkansas Beautiful Commission (KAB), recognized Representative Justin Boyd for his dedication to improve litter cleanup statewide by sponsoring House Resolution 1004, while speaking of the importance of litter control in Arkansas. Also recognized for their commitment to a cleaner state were KAB’s fellow state agencies and “partners” in litter education and prevention: Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department and Arkansas Highway Police Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism and Arkansas State Parks Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality Arkansas Economic Development Commission “As director of the Keep Arkansas Beautiful Commission for the past 18 years, I wholly endorse this resolve and am thankful for the cooperation it advances, which is already alive and well in Arkansas,” said Robert Phelps to the assembled crowd. “But to ultimately prevent litter, the solution is in the hands of individuals, not government.” Volunteers statewide are encouraged to get involved locally in KAB’s annual cleanup and beautification campaign. Those interested in organizing a Great American Cleanup event in their community can find a registration form and how-to video at KeepArkansasBeautiful.com. For those interested in volunteering at a local event, check out the Calendar of Events on the KAB website to find an already-organized event near you. About Keep Arkansas Beautiful The Keep Arkansas Beautiful Commission (KAB), consisting of a professional staff and a nine-member advisory board appointed by the governor, is a division of the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism. As a certified state affiliate of Keep America Beautiful Inc., KAB inspires and educates individuals to reduce litter, recycle and keep Arkansas beautiful. KAB is funded through its 1 percent portion of the eighth-cent Conservation Tax and, by mobilizing volunteers, returns to the state a cost benefit of more than $6 in community service for each program dollar spent. For more information, visit KeepArkansasBeautiful.com or stay connected on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. About Keep America Beautiful A leading national nonprofit, Keep America Beautiful inspires and educates people to take action every day to improve and beautify their community environment. KAB envisions a country in which every community is a clean, green and beautiful place to live. Established in 1953, Keep America Beautiful provides the expertise, programs and resources to help people end littering, improve recycling and beautify America’s communities. The organization is driven by the work and passion of more than 620 state- and community-based Keep America Beautiful affiliates and millions of volunteers, and the support of corporate partners, municipalities, elected officials and individuals. To donate or take action, visit kab.org. Follow Keep America Beautiful on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.     -30-      ...

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Winners chosen in statewide youth poster contest

Posted by on Mar 17, 2017 in News

12 Arkansas schools represented by winners, honorable mentions Six pieces of student artwork conveying messages about keeping Arkansas clean and green have been chosen as winners in the Great American Cleanup™ in Arkansas Youth Poster Contest promoted by the Keep Arkansas Beautiful Commission (KAB). A panel of judges chose the winning posters from 421 entries from 58 schools and school/youth organizations statewide. Winners in the Grades K-2 division are: First Place – Kalina Garza, a second-grader at St. Paul Schools in St. Paul (Madison County) Second Place – Shaylah Richie, a second-grader at City Heights Elementary School in Van Buren (Crawford County) Third Place – Remingtyn Richie, a kindergartner at City Heights Elementary School in Van Buren (Crawford County) Winners in the Grades 3-5 division include: First Place – Teagan Gabbard, a fourth-grader at George B. Ledbetter Intermediate School in Farmington (Washington County) Second Place – Avari Golden, a third-grader at Bismarck Elementary School in Bismarck (Hot Spring County) Third Place – Izzy Bailey, a fifth-grader at Episcopal Collegiate Lower School in Little Rock (Pulaski County) Each first-place winner will receive a Walmart gift card valued at $50; each second-place winner, a $35 Walmart gift card; and each third-place winner, a $20 Walmart gift card. The Keep Arkansas Beautiful Foundation sponsors the purchase of the Walmart gift cards. A KAB Commission representative presents each winner with the gift card, his/her poster laminated and a certificate of achievement at a local ceremony. Students receiving an Honorable Mention from the judges include: Brooklyn Calico, a fourth-grader at St. Paul Schools in St. Paul (Madison County) Ana Castaneda, a fifth-grader at King Elementary School in Van Buren (Crawford County) Layton Dallas, a first-grader at De Queen Primary School in De Queen (Sevier County) Micaiah Hardage, a first-grader being homeschooled in Malvern (Hot Spring County) Heaven Ipina, a fifth-grader at Marked Tree Elementary in Marked Tree (Poinsett County) Dabney Lovins, a second-grader at Lakewood Elementary School in North Little Rock (Pulaski County) Danielle Pearce, a kindergartner at St. Paul Schools in St. Paul (Madison County) Madilyn Pearce, a first-grader at St. Paul Schools in St. Paul (Madison County) Elise Pinkerton, a fourth-grader at George B. Ledbetter Intermediate School in Farmington (Washington County) Kayden Price, a third-grader at Amboy Elementary School in North Little Rock (Pulaski County) Caleb Putnam, a third-grader at eStem Elementary School in Little Rock (Pulaski County) Patrick Sheehan, a fifth-grader at CATO Elementary School in Sherwood (Pulaski County) The winning pieces and honorable mentions will be shown April 10-14 at the Thea Foundation gallery in downtown North Little Rock. The winning entries and honorable mentions are also posted on Facebook.com/KeepArkansasBeautiful. The Youth Poster Contest is part of the 2017 Great American Cleanup in Arkansas campaign, the spring statewide community cleanup effort promoted annually by KAB, a certified state affiliate of Keep America Beautiful.   About Thea Foundation The THEA Foundation, established in 2001,...

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Three Tiny Habits to a Cleaner Community

Posted by on Mar 6, 2017 in News

Image courtesy of www.strangerwall.wordpress.com Picking up that piece of litter left by someone else is not necessarily a habit for most people. But, it could be. Keep Arkansas Beautiful challenges YOU to take a play out of the Great American Cleanup’s handbook this year and help clean YOUR block! According to B.J. Fogg, a psychologist and researcher at Stanford University who has studied behavior change for more than 20 years, one needs to design behavior changes that are both easy to do and can be seamlessly slipped into your existing routine. Consider these: Image courtesy of www.youtube.com Pick Up Someone Else’s Litter While walking into work tomorrow, find one piece of someone else’s litter and throw it away – that’s achievable, right? By doing so, you can help transform public places into beautiful spaces, and your peers will notice. This small act shows civic pride in your community and can aid you in helping others create an environmentally healthy and socially connected neighborhood for everyone. Image courtesy of www.studeri.org Recycle Your Plastic Bottles The first step with this action is washing out your plastic bottles. Did you know an item cannot be recycled unless it is cleared of all food and waste particles? That’s one of the biggest reasons that most of our items never actually become recycled but end up in landfills. Do your environment a favor and wash out your plastic bottles before tossing them into the recycling bin. You will find, as time goes on, that recycling other items will become easier and part of your daily habit.   Image courtesy of www.littlestepsbigimpact.com Volunteer Start small and volunteer for a local cleanup! Community organizations across the state host local cleanups and litter pickups annually. Check out the Calendar of Events on the KAB website to find an event near you. Last year’s spring Great American Cleanup yielded 160 local events across the state involving nearly 7,000 Arkansans, who picked up more than 290,000 pounds of litter and collected over 839,000 pounds of bulky waste, from roughly 780 miles of roadsides and shorelines. For those interested in organizing a Great American Cleanup event in their community, a registration form and how-to video can be found at KeepArkansasBeautiful.com. Developing tiny habits such as these can make a big difference in your personal life and your community. Aristotle once said, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.” So, be excellent today and tackle those tiny habits with gusto! Before you know it, you can create a cleaner, greener space for you and the community around you....

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