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Rockin’ Eco Hero brings fun learning to Franklin

Magician. Comedian. Scientist. Teacher. Which one describers performer Steve Trash? All of the above.

The Steve Trash Show rocked Franklin County July 12, entertaining and mystifying TRACKS summer campers with his magic and amazing science facts. Organizer Dr. Susan Hargett said children were filled with awe and laughter as most of the show was filled with antics to help them remember facts – but at the same time rock out to music with laughter and interaction.

“The Steve Trash Show is a dynamic, non-conventional way to bring STEM education to students through the enticing world of magic,” explained Hargett, community education director for Franklin County Schools. “Not only do children learn about science, ecology and recycling, but every show has a character lesson teaching love and respect. Steve Trash is the Mr. Rogers of this generation.”

The program was held in the Belgreen High School auditorium as part of a “Fantastic Fun Day” planned by Hargett and Franklin County Extension director Katernia Cole-Coffey, with help from TRACKS teacher Briana Champion.

Trash appears on Alabama Public Television in a series on Saturday mornings and is a YouTube sensation. His program helps children with STEM competencies as well as character development. According to his website, Trash “has entertained over 25 million people since 1984. He’s appeared in theatres, fairs and festivals all over the world, including Japan, Australia, Canada, Portugal, Spain and the UAE – United Arab Emirates.”

Hargett said two shows were presented – one at 10 a.m. and one at 1 p.m. – with the 21st Century Community Learning Center TRACKS students attending both.

In between shows the students enjoyed the new LU Interactive Playground at Belgreen. The FCS Child Nutrition Program provided lunch.

After the last show students enjoyed snow cones, courtesy Cole-Coffey. Hargett said students next transitioned to the gymnasium for a show by a Harlem Globetrotter, Lucius Siran Winston, and helped participate in learning basketball fundamentals and watching him perform his sports skills.

Helping provide the resources for the day were Rep. Jamie Kiel, Rep. Proncey Robertson, Sen. Larry Stutts and FCS Superintendent Greg Hamilton. More than 300 people attended, including students, families and community members.

“We want to send a tremendous thank you to representatives Kiel and Robertson along with Sen. Larry Stutts and Superintendent Greg Hamilton for providing this opportunity for our children and community,” Hargett said. “Without it the show would not have been possible.”

Kiel, who attended last week’s show, called Trash “truly one of Franklin County’s greatest ambassadors.”

“Steve travels across the United States and around the world entertaining and using his talent to make people aware of the need to recycle. He’s also very busy teaching kids about science with his new PBS television show,” Kiel said. “Because Steve is on the road so much, most people do not know he lives right here in Franklin County. We were very fortunate to have the opportunity for our community to experience his unique show.”

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