Electric co-ops add their touch to Minnesota state parks

 

Volunteers with Federated Rural Electric Association cleaned up Kilen Woods State Park where their GreenTouch clean-up was located.

Volunteers with Federated Rural Electric Association cleaned up Kilen Woods State Park where their GreenTouch clean-up was located.

Several Touchstone Energy cooperatives across Minnesota pitched in at their local state and county parks this spring in an effort to spruce up their natural beauty.

Volunteers from seven electric cooperatives took part in this year’s GreenTouch program by raking leaves and pine needles, and cleaning roadside ditches, picnic shelters and campground areas. They also picked up litter and cleared overhanging branches on trails, moved gravel off the paved areas, replaced sod, and cleaned the office and park shelters.

Some planted native species and seeded wetland areas. A few line technicians cleaned out some areas with a brush mower and wood chipper. Others replaced rotted sign posts and spread grass and flower seeds.

“It was a beautiful day to be outdoors enjoying the spring weather and making a difference at Kilen Woods State Park,” said Andrea Christoffer, Federated Rural Electric Association’s marketing and communications manager.

Cooperatives that participated this year included: Federated Rural Electric Association, Freeborn-Mower Cooperative Services, Beltrami Electric Cooperative, Dakota Electric Association, Roseau Electric Cooperative, PKM Electric Cooperative and East Central Energy.

All told, 357 volunteers worked 1,220 hours.

The GreenTouch program is a partnership between Minnesota’s Touchstone Energy cooperatives and the Minnesota State Parks and Trails system. Electric cooperatives throughout the state also help fund the state park guide.

Over the last 15 years, GreenTouch has organized nearly 9,709 volunteers who donated more than 35,800 hours taking care of Minnesota’s State Parks.