Students beautify Pine River-Backus school forest, Pequot Lakes parks

Pine River-Backus students put in many hours to clear trails, rebuild dock and spread mulch in school forest. Pequot Lakes students clean up parks during Day of Caring

Pine River-Backus High School students cleared deadfalls in the school forest Thursday, May 6 for the annual service day. Submitted Photo (May 2021)

Pine River-Backus High School students logged an estimated $3,000 worth of labor in the form of cleanup for the school district, according to teacher Deb Schlueter.

Meanwhile, Pequot Lakes students worked at area parks during their annual Day of Caring on Wednesday, May 5.

View photos of the day of service, visit: Pine River-Backus Service Day
PR-B students tackled outdoor work as part of the district's annual Tiger Pride Service Day on Thursday, May 6. Students in grades 7-12 spread out through the community to do small projects and clean up. Schlueter estimated the group did an equivalent of 250 hours of work.

Some students operated in small groups while others gathered in larger groups for cleanup at places like the cemetery and the school forest.

At the school forest, teacher Steven Sandeen guided a crew through a repair of the dock that extends from the forest onto Norway Lake. The dock is now safe and useable by those visiting. Similarly, seventh and eighth graders cleaned deadfall from the school forest outdoor classroom and trail system.


The forest features a bridge that crosses a boggy area. Students helped custodian Jim Niskanen there to spread mulch where the trail had deteriorated and become less passable.

Much of the work done during the Pequot Lakes Day of Caring focused on beautifying area parks. Small groups of students took to Trailside Park and Sibley Lake Park in Pequot Lakes, Pelican Woods Cemetery in Breezy Point and a number of other locations.

Other students helped in any way possible at local churches and residences.

Travis Grimler began work at the Echo Journal Jan. 2 of 2013 while the publication was still split in two as the Pine River Journal and Lake Country Echo. He is a full time reporter/photographer/videographer for the paper and operates primarily out of the northern stretch of the coverage area (Hackensack to Jenkins).
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