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Monday, May 4, 2009

NJHS Report: Zachry Students Spiffy Up Park...

Can you use a little good news about middle school students? I think you can. Around here, it is not uncommon for people to draw negative conclusions about many of the kids they see, especially when they don't know them personally. With the obvious signs of taggers along fences and reports of shenanigans of all sorts, I can see how you might just, as that snooty waiter in Ferris Bueller's Day Off says, "Weep for the future". Well here is something that might cheer you up.This past weekend, my wife and I had a hankerin' for some donuts but we didn't want to eat them alone. So, we headed off to Kuwamura Park in Emerald Valley where a dozen National Junior Honor Society students from Zachry Middle School were performing a little community service project. Now this isn't the kind of community service that you get when you are in trouble for something, this is the fun sort of project you do to show pride in the community and demonstrate some of the responsibility that comes with being a good citizen.These kids, their NJHS Sponsor Mrs. Linda Bullard, and several parents joined Mike Yager and Richard Garcia from the A-Team at the park to clean up picnic tables, trash cans and playground equipment that had been badly defaced by vandals doing the opposite of community service.The volunteers painted, scrubbed and scraped, then picked up trash and generally cleaned the park up. The least we could do was offer them a few of our donuts, right?I spoke with Mrs. Bullard about these great kids. I know that there is more than just good grades to being in NJHS since both our our kids were privileged to be members. In fact, the students have to maintain a high grade average (above 90% I believe, they must not have any trips to the office for discipline problems and of course, they participate in community service projects like the park clean-up.

Chances are, with the good habits these students are demonstrating at the middle school level, they will continue on to shine in high school and beyond. And that is some good news we can all appreciate.

Would you like a chance to shine in the community? Why not consider demonstrating a little community service of your own (and have a whole lot of fun) by joining Mike Yager and the crowd that make up our own A-Team. We plan to work with another great set of students from Timberwilde Elementary on Saturday, 30 May. Need more info? E-mail me and I will put you in touch with Mike.


David said...


This is David in Japan. Kuwamura appears to be a Japanese name. Do you know the story behind the name of the park?

Dave said...

Do you know the story behind the name of the park?
I'm afraid I don't - other than I believe it was named after one of the former members of the GNW board. But I'll find out and post unless one of the other readers gives us the answer first!

Anonymous said...


This is a great story. Yes, there are many good youths out there.

Braun Station West

Dave said...

Do you know the story behind the name of the park?

From what I was able to gather on short notice (I went to the lodge and looked on a plaque there) Paul J. Kuwamura was a member of our board during the mid-90's.

When I get more info, I'll post a story on the blog.

David said...


Thanks for checking on that. It'll be interesting to read more if you find anything.

M2 said...

A standing ovation to these great young Americans! With all the news about kids getting in trouble, it is good to read about those who actually make productive use of their time!

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San Antonio, TX, United States
I love to observe the odd things happening around me as I go about my day. I especially like it when I can get a picture of people being themselves. Here, I attempt to report the various people and events I have encountered in my neighborhood, and my city. I'd also love to hear from you. Feel free to e-mail your experiences and photos of life in San Antonio.

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