Lyon students and faculty have been watching out for local waterways.
Assistant Professors of Biology Dr. Maryline Jones and Dr. Allyn Dodd formed the Ex-Stream Team two years ago to clean creeks and bodies of water around Batesville. The group picks up trash in the water and the surrounding area.
“We usually clean the area where Pfeiffer and Miller creeks meet, right behind the College,” said Jones. “Locals use the spot to walk dogs, go mudding and do other outdoor activities.”
The Ex-Stream Team also cleans the rest area by Salado Creek, a local swimming hole and party spot.
“I have wanted to form this group since I came to Lyon in 2016,” said Jones. “When Dr. Dodd joined the College, I felt like we would be the perfect team to create what is now the Ex-Stream Team.”
Sophomore Eli Kemp, of Conway, is the current president of the group. He found out about it his freshman year and thought the Ex-Stream Team sounded like the perfect club for him.
“I have always been passionate about the environment and aquatic habitats in particular,” he said. “Batesville and the surrounding area have some beautiful freshwater environments, but often these are polluted by others.”
Junior Jordan Webb, of Mount Pleasant, said the team protects the streams in the local area by organizing group service projects to clean the water and by educating others on the importance of keeping the streams clean.
Sophomore Michael Uecker, of Brockwell, said the group even does community outreach local schools to teach kids about the effects of pollution. The organization appealed to him because it offers a way to give back to the community while earning volunteer hours.
“We also kayak sometimes, and who doesn’t enjoy kayaking?” Uecker said, laughing.
To get involved, Webb said, students just need to contact Jones or Dodd. Jones said the team has had other faculty members and high school students join them on outings.
While the group was not very active for a while because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the president of the team said getting back to campus has allowed them to get back to work.
“You can find a lot of weird things that people just throw into streams,” Kemp said.
“The strangest moment was definitely when Michael found an old cash register,” said Webb, laughing.
“It was a bit of an older model but still looked somewhat functional,” Uecker said.
“Also, the amount of dumped tires near bodies of water is astounding! I think we pulled out more than 10 tires during Service Day and had to leave at least five that we couldn’t remove.”
“We found enough tires to deck out our own car, and even a cut ankle monitor,” Kemp said, laughing.
He concluded, “Ex-Stream Team is a wonderful way to give back to the larger Batesville community, and I can’t wait to continue it during my time here at Lyon.”
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