Armed with garbage bags, gloves and brooms, more than 200 youth are cleaning up after the hundreds of thousands of Stampede visitors on a daily basis.
The Calgary Stampede Green Team is a partnership between the Calgary Stampede and the Boys and Girls Club of Calgary (BGCC), and for the 37th year, it is having continuing success, according to the co-ordinator.
“It’s a lot of fun for the kids and they gain their first work experience and it also teaches them leadership, interviewing and budgeting skills,” said BGCC co-ordinator Breanne Westlin.
Youth between the ages of 12 and 18 work from 9 a.m. until 2 a.m. cleaning up the grounds of garbage and recycling, Westlin added.
Shannon Borynsky, 14, and Curtis Zeiler, 14, both enjoy the paycheque at the end of the 10-day fair, but they say they also like the atmosphere of the Stampede. “I have actually done this for three years and I just like the experience,” Borynsky said. “Maybe next year I might do it again.”
What about all the rain?
Zeiler actually likes it better that way. “I like the rain much more then the scorching heat, so I would say the weather has been on our side,” he said.
About the Green Team
• The program was established in 1972.
• There are 220 young people between 12 and 18 working daily at various shifts.
• Since 2004, Waste Management has become another partner.