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Arriving at the site, we were met by IAE’s superstar restoration technician Anna Ramthun, and Forest Service botanist, Matt Smith. We gave the volunteers a quick tour of the site, and then they were off to work. Some folks piled sticks, some shoveled stump grindings and others helped load material into the truck and ATV, all while engaging in friendly conversation. The group was fantastic, worked well together, and at the end of the day they accomplished a ton of work for the Pioneer Butte restoration project.
My favorite part of the event was at the end when everyone gathered around the vans and participated in an activity I’d never heard of, called Rose-Thorn-Bud. Each person got an opportunity to explain what their favorite part of the event was (rose), their least favorite part (thorn), and something they learned or might change in the future (bud). The positive sentiments towards learning about ecology and restoration, being out in nature and taking a moment to disconnect from life (you know, phones, email, news, and all that good stuff) was so refreshing to hear. It was a nice reminder that the work we do at IAE goes far beyond restoring landscapes and educating people, but it can bring people from different backgrounds and interests together and create a positive space for all to enjoy. Thanks again everyone for a great day, and see you at Marys Peak on October 22.