What makes a Carolina summer? Is it defined by cookouts, movies, fireflies, an ice cold soda while fishing or just plain crazy heat?! Growing up, I know my summers were defined by the moments my best friend and I spent playing around in the creek by our house. We’d fill up some water balloons, run down to the creek and try and see how far we could float them downstream before they popped. At the time, I had no idea that the creek water we played in was connected to the Neuse River system.
Well, it’s been several years since I waded through that creek, but I found myself reminiscing about water balloons, loud squeals, and lots of giggles this past weekend as my fellow Wootenites and I volunteered at “Loose on the Neuse.” Led by Matthew Starr, Upper Neuse Riverkeeper, a group of around 100 volunteers spent a Carolina Saturday morning cleaning up the Neuse River between Anderson Point Park and Milburnie Dam.
You know it’s going to be a hot one when you arrive at 7:30 AM and you’re already ready to run down to the river and jump in; however, 63 bags of garbage, one cash register and a mattress later, our team unanimously declared that the satisfaction that came with volunteering was well worth the early start and hot weather.
Now, don’t tell them I’m sharing this, but I think the best part had to be watching two of our very own capsize their canoe. The look of disbelief on their faces as they surfaced was absolutely priceless! It seems that the Neuse River can still make adults squeal and giggle just the same as it can for two girls with some water balloons.
That being said, its engineers like Brian Oschwald, PE, and BIM designers like Trey Taylor who are willing to give up a Saturday morning, fall out of a canoe, and pick up trash for four hours that make The Wooten Company what it is. Our staff’s commitment to the health and welfare of the communities we serve doesn’t just exist during normal business hours. We are dedicated to serving the communities we love all the time.
Regardless of your definition of what makes a Carolina summer, we hope that the idea of knowing you can make a positive difference in the community inspires you to spend some time (indoors or out) giving back to your community!