Carter Elementary Fifth-Grader Receives Award from Keep Macon-Bibb Beautiful | Community Spirit
By Daniel Daniels, Bibb County School District Communications Intern
A Carter Elementary School fifth grade student was honored at the 2013 Keep Macon-Bibb Beautiful and Cherry Blossom Festival Awards Luncheon on Monday, March 11. Marquis Peek received the Youth of the Year award presented by the Keep Macon-Bibb Beautiful Commission because of his 500-pound contribution to his class recycling project.
Marquis’s teacher, Holley Stejskal, entered her class in the Recycle Bowl, which is a national K-12 recycling contest sponsored by Keep America Beautiful. Ms. Stejskal’s class was the sole participant in the Recycle Bowl from Bibb County.
In addition to Marquis’s personal contribution, his parents also donated recyclables. Marquis’s mom is a Supply Sergeant in the Army, and she recruited her co-workers to contribute to the competition.
“She had all these workers, and she started collecting water bottles,” Marquis said. “And my dad, he works at Chick-fil-A, so he started bringing fry boxes and everything.”
Ms. Stejskal entered her class in the national Recycle Bowl competition at the request of Carolyn Crayton, founder of the Cherry Blossom Festival and Keep Macon-Bibb Beautiful. Ms. Stejskal said she was happy to contribute to the program, but she never imagined her class would contribute as much as it did.
“I never dreamed that they would come in with what they did,” she said. “We collected over 1,600 pounds in six weeks. And Marquis alone brought in over 500.”
Ms. Stejskal said this was the first time the Youth of the Year award was presented based on recycling, and she said the award is usually given to high school students.
The award was meaningful to Marquis because, “I’ve never actually won anything before,” he said.
“I was the only kid that got an award,” he said. “And I was the only person that got a standing ovation.”