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Rifle Seventh Day Adventist Church highway cleanup

How many can claim they have cleaned a two-mile portion of Interstate 70 for 17 consecutive years? Many of the members of the Rifle Seventh Day Adventist Church can.

In recent years the youth group known as Pathfinders has been a big part of that effort. The Pathfinder leaders have made it a community service requirement for all youth in Pathfinders.



Even though it is a lot of work to get up early and do a two-hour stint, often in less than desirable weather conditions, everyone who participates always returns to the church excited about the effect they have had on that two-mile area. Usually about 100 bags of trash are filled.

During the lunch the church provides for participants afterwards, there is always “show and tell” so the youth can tell of their special finds along the highway — cell phones, credit cards, hub caps, etc. Once a leader found part of a car emblem with the letters “igh”. Having not found anything else of meaning, the leader picked it up for her show and tell item, thinking “igh” has to mean something. Soon she came up with “in God’s hands.”



That was meaningful to everyone as a prayer for safety is always offered before going out to do this work. Additionally, two Colorado Department of Transportation safety films are always watched and special safety instructions are always given.

The Adopt-a-Highway program is a wonderful way for the youth to learn to be part of their local community’s improvement.

Elaine Cloninger


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