Project aims for less mess

Three students at the Wilderness Charter School are working on a project they hope will clean up some of the more messy areas in the woods surrounding Ashland.

"We have spent so much time hanging out in these woods with our friends, it was just time to give something back," said Casey Schein about the project she is working on with two of her classmates, Conner Macfarlane and Travis Bond.

The three students are members of the Wilderness Charter School, an alternative education program through Ashland high school.

"Part of the program is having to do a community action project at the end of the year using what we have learned about sustainability and using the knowledge to benefit the community," Schein said.

Ashland is known for having beautiful surrounding areas and many high school students have taken advantage of these locations, however many times these pristine pieces of nature are not always respected, according to the students.

"A lot of times we will go up to these spots and there will be bottles, beer cans, and cigarette butts all over the place," McFarlund said.

Bond was the first one to come up with an idea of how to influence the littering situation by finding a way to encourage kids to pick up their garbage.

"Me and Casey just started talking about it and we came up with an idea to make signs reminding people not to litter and put them up in a bunch of chill spots around town," Bond said. "Later on we decided that we would also clean up all the areas to set a good example."

The three made a total of nine signs from wood and used a drill and a wood burner to create their messages.

"We wanted to do something that looked natural and that would last in the wilderness," Macfarlane said.

The signs can be seen in places such as the fairy ponds and the cove.

"We are all going to be leaving the rogue valley within the next couple of years and it feels good to be leaving a positive impact on our community and doing something to protect the wilderness we have enjoyed so much," Macfarlane said.

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