By Bonnie Hinkle -
The grounds of Belzer Middle School in Lawrence Township were transformed May 20 by an army of Eli Lilly volunteers who participated in the second annual Global Day of Service. They partnered with students, Boy Scouts and other community members to complete projects to beautify the school.
The main task was renovation of a courtyard which, when completed, will include a covered outdoor classroom using material recycled from the former RCA dome, a pond, a rain barrel water collection system, a pathway of honor made up of inscribed bricks, picnic tables, gardens and bird feeders.
Students and volunteers were vigilant as they shoveled and cleared masses of rocks in the area, and the outcome of their efforts will be greatly appreciated for years to come. The volunteers planted trees, shrubs and native Indiana grasses to enhance the entrance of the school.
Two Eagle Scout candidates were involved in the project, helping to organize and lead the planning, preparation and volunteer efforts. The scouts are Cody Wilson, a junior at Greenwood Community High School, and Tyler Walls, a junior at Carmel High School.
The original building on the site had a long history. The three-story building was built as the community high school combining Oaklandon, Castleton and Lawrence Schools in 1941. It became Belzer Junior High School when the current Lawrence Central High School was built in 1964. It was then renamed Belzer Middle School when sixth grade was added in 1981. Last summer, a major renovation to the school took place when new seventh and eight grade wings were added, and the original three-story building was razed.
This workday was a culmination of efforts by the Belzer Faculty Organization, staff and teachers to beautify the grounds and honor the history of the school, as well as encourage hands-on learning about alternate energy and resource conservation. It was sponsored by the Project Green Schools Program of Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, Inc. Pond building materials were purchased with a $3,000 Toolbox for Education grant from Lowe’s Charitable and Education Foundation.
Senator James Merritt was present during the transformation to pay honor to the school and the efforts of the community. “This is a great opportunity for the community, staff and students to work together to transform and improve the appearance of this historical site,” said Mr. Ron Davie, Principal.
Pay a visit to Belzer this fall and see the beautiful completion of this project!Read more