Hot dog! Spring's sprung

Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Tribune photo by Clint Confehr Retrieving litter from Rock Creek are, from left, Taylor Barnwell, Dustin Dilbeck and Justin Dilbeck who did so on their own at the kickoff program for Lewisburg's curbside recycling service.

A couple of weekend events in Lewisburg drew hundreds of people outdoors on the second day of spring when hot dogs, hamburgers and soda pop were given away for a cause and a commercial event.

Amid the planned purposes by parents, businessmen and Lewisburg leaders were the kids who inspired adults as the youngsters expanded their volunteer service, or just explored their town during the wonderful weather.

"These kids all volunteered and were eager to help with the recycling project," said Melanie Wiles, a Lewisburg Middle School teacher who told about students helping the distribution of recycling carts on Saturday before the curbside recycling program's kick-off at noon in Rock Creek Park.

With help from a state grant, the city is providing drum-shaped carts on wheels for recyclables at every home. Curbside collection of paper, plastic and metal starts next week. It's an expansion of a pilot program begun a year ago in the southwest quadrant of Lewisburg, so hundreds of carts had to be assembled and distributed.

"They started at ICP at 7:30 a.m.," Wiles said of students who loaded recycling carts on "cow trailers at the warehouse."

Thereafter, students and other volunteers went to Rock Creek Park for lunch, music, fellowship and more words on recycling. Then, several of the kids decided they wanted to pickup trash at the creek.

"The clean-up was their idea, and I think it's the start of a good thing," Wiles said.

Justin Dilbeck, 13, of Northgate Arms, and Taylor Barnwell, 12, of Ward Road, were among the impromptu volunteers.

"It's wrong for people to throw things on the ground," Barnwell said. "So, we thought we'd pickup and help out."

His grandmother, Rebecca Moore, said, "I'm very proud of him. He's maturing the way I wanted him to. He's interested in recycling... He was really excited about being here to do this."

Waddell McQuiddy, 14, of Water St., is concerned about the welfare of animals.

"I wanted to make sure ... the animals didn't eat trash," McQuiddy said.

Asked if he'd prefer a basketball made of recycled plastic and/or rubber, he replied, that he would "as long as it would bounce."

People at the kick-off were told of new schedules for garbage collection. It's Tuesday north of Commerce Street and Wednesday south of Commerce Street. Recyclables will be collected on Thursday north of Commerce and on Friday south of Commerce.

The city's Curbside Recycling Committee chairwoman, Barbara Woods, explained how only one day of trash collection would be needed if recyclable materials are kept separate and put out in the carts for collection as recyclable paper, plastic and metal.

One of the most common questions about recycling is whether cans, plastic bottles and milk jugs have to be washed, Woods said. Rinsing is sufficient, she said. Shaking tap water in a bottle or can is better than just tossing such plastic and metal containers in the cart.

Another frequently asked question: Can plastic shopping bags be put out for curbside collection in the cart? No, they can't, she said. The bags gum up the works along the sorting line in Nashville where recyclables are bought from the city.

That information and more was explained Saturday afternoon and distributed to all households in a door hanger bag on a brochure with collection schedules and various trinkets to solicit participation.

Hot dogs and soft drinks were available at Rock Creek Park where estimates of the crowd ranged from 150 to more than 200.

That's compared to twice as many hot dogs and about 300 hamburgers cooked and given away at the Stan McNabb Ford Mercury dealership on North Ellington Parkway where families were fed, children entertained and the Air-Evac Lifeteam helicopter ambulance was on display until its crew had to respond to a call.

Air Eac EMS Inc operates more than 100 medically-equipped Bell helicopters in 14 states. The closest base for the subscription helicopter ambulance service is at Lewisburg's Ellington Airport where 10 employees wok various shifts around the clock.

The chopper is "Awesome," according to Ysenia Eguia.

But Jennifer Eguia said, "I'd be the first to say I want to go back down."

They watched the helicopter take off after Air Evac's David Copeland explained there's a two-minute warm up, and take off after five to seven minutes, during which preflight safety checks are conducted. Twelve minutes after take-off at the Ford dealership here, the chopper was at Lincoln Regional Hospital in Fayetteville.

Meanwhile, Ford dealership owner Trey McNabb was helping cook all those hot dogs and hamburgers, some of which were consumed by Alexis Snoderly, 43, of Chapel Hill who won the hot dog eating contest.

"That's why I went," he said, actually, of two contests. "I saw it in the newspaper. I didn't feel too good after eating all the hot dogs."

He won the other contest, too.

His female Pit Bulldog, "BB," was judged the ugliest dog of seven entries.

"I felt like I had a pretty good chance of winning because she looks pretty rough," Snoderly said.

The dog's name, "BB," is short for "Bald Boogers," he said. "She was bald and all snotty when I found her. She was totally bald..."

He says he believes that condition was a result of heredity, although he concedes it might have been a result of mistreatment of the dog that was apparently dropped off at the side of a road near his home.

"I think somebody knows I have dogs and dropped her off," Snoderly said .

He has nine dogs: four inside, and; five outside. They include a puppy, Chihuahuas and some rabbit-chasing Beagles at his home near Overton Dairy Farm.

"'BB," he said, was also suffering from "ingrown hair and zitty looks where the hair's grown back...

"She was hanging around the house and I started feeding her and now she's in the house. The dog looked rough when I started taking care of her."

Snoderly said he's disabiled and "BB's" $50 prize money was spent on dog food.

His disability is a result of a bad car crash at Tullahoma nearly 8 years ago when he was airlifted from the crash to Chattanooga.

One of his reasons to go to the dealership's event on Saturday was to see the helicopter ambulance.

McNabb said he's held other Spring Flings. They started with free food.
Citywide curbside recycling starts April 2 and 3.