By By Carol Niswonger Special to the Herald Ledger
After the threat of storms passed on Thursday night, the annual awards banquet of the Lyon County Conservation District was celebrated in the Social Hall of the Eddyville United Methodist Church with the church youth serving nearly 90 guests.
With a welcome by chairman Brian Dunn and an invocation by Mike Clayton, the special guests were recognized by Anthony Young. Local conservationist, Marty Lewis, an avid photographer, shared his numerous photographs with a story for each one.
"We all work for the same team," said Lewis as he explained the name change that often confuses callers to the local office. "The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is just a wide umbrella that covers the many services that are offered, and it is simply part of the rich history that is the backbone of the Lyon County Conservation District."
The Lyon County Conservation District members have spent their livelihoods on the premise as detailed by the National Association of Conservation Districts by incorporating the mission that "Each day people take a spoon of food and put it in their mouths. Where does all of that food come from? How does it get from the soil to the spoon? It is a long process that depends on many people across the country, and sometimes around the world."
It is during this annual banquet that the local members share their contributions to this cycle of food production and conservation of natural resources.
Following the meal and the program, the annual awards were presented with Audrey Kennedy winning first place in the Jim Claypool Art and Writing Contest. Audrey Yanez placed second, and third place was awarded to Rebecca Neighbor.
The Dyer family was honored with the Tommy Dyer Memorial Award, which was presented by the board of supervisors. The recipient of the Woodmen of the World Conservation Award was Harry Barnett.
The Master Conservationist Award was presented to Chris Stewart, with Carolyn Fralick, district administrator, thrilled they were able to surprise him with the announcement.
Following the awards ceremony, door prizes were distributed with numerous locally crafted bluebird houses now already a part of the Lyon County landscape.
Free informative, colorful calendars were also made available to the guests.
The next event, sponsored by the local district will be the "free tree give-away" with trees available at the office at 650 Trade Avenue in Eddyville, beginning on April 5.
This year, a variety of trees such as Cypress, Persimmon, Black Walnut, Hickory Nut, and White Pine will be made available.
All will come with planting instructions.