Friday, Jan. 23, 2009 | 9:30 p.m.
Don't call the Jan. 23-24 fundraiser at Sue Morrow Elementary School a rummage or garage sale. The Gifted and Talented Education students behind the recycle fundraiser are inspired by their devotion to the planet, encouraging others to give away their unused stuff rather than see it tossed into a landfill.
The fifth graders are also earning money for a potential trip to Washington, D.C., should they be selected for the sixth year in a row by the state National Energy Education Development board.
"It's to tap the creative imagination of youth across America in identifying alternative sources of fuel," Principal Mike Rodriguez said.
While learning about the environment, past winners have cruised the Potomac River, toured the White House and have visited the Senate chambers.
"I always wanted to visit Washington," fifth grader Sabrina Spurlock said. "It's been my dream."
Parent/volunteer Lori Houser hoped students would raise $1,000. Any unsold clothing will be given to Giving Life Ministries, which will distribute it to the homeless. Other unsold items will be donated to Goodwill, and if students do not win the trip, they will use the money to buy supplies for Morrow.
Students have been learning how to reduce waste in landfills and will host a reduced-waste lunch where students bring their sandwiches and chips in containers rather than bags, Houser said.
Students are also working on environmental projects in groups of two.
"We learn how to conserve energy," fifth grader Kaitlyn Guerin said. "Change light bulbs to fluorescent and turn off lights.
Customer Karin Wonderling left with a host items. She arrived after prodding from her 5-year-old son Gavin Cobian.
"He said, 'Let's find a yard sale,'" she said. "It's a perfect day for it."
Dave Clark can be reached at 990-2677 or firstname.lastname@example.org.