Cleaning up Mother Nature: Public Lands Day picks up Muscatatuck

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Volunteers took to the grounds of Muscatatuck National Wildlife Refuge for National Public Lands Day on Saturday.

In its 18th year, National Public Lands Day is a day set aside for volunteers to help take care of public lands such as wildlife refuges across the nation on the fourth Saturday of September each year.

Volunteers from across the state joined the staff at Muscatatuck to participate in the event by picking up trash, clearing land for future projects and removing invasive plants.

About 30 volunteers helped clean up, including the Hayden Elementary School Refuge Rangers and a group of scouts from a troop in Indianapolis, Muscatatuck park ranger Donna Stanley said.

“Public lands never have enough money or man power to do what they need to do,” Stanley said. “We couldn’t do a lot of the things we do without volunteers.”

Having a day set aside specifically for volunteering helps people get involved who might not have gotten involved regularly, she said.

“It’s something groups can plan on,” Stanley said.

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