Heehyun (Judy) Moon, 17, of Centreville, won the Fairfax County Park Authority’s T-shirt design contest for the agency’s 2014 Take Back the Forest campaign, which recruits volunteers to remove invasive plant species and replace them with native plants. Moon is an 11th grader at Centreville High School.
“Having gardening as one of my hobbies and interests, I was searching for volunteer opportunities that have to do with it and happened to find the contest,” Moon said. “I decided to enter the contest because I thought it would be a good opportunity to share my view on nursing the environment.”
Moon was at Park Authority offices on her 17th birthday to receive a $50 gift certificate from the outdoor co-op REI (Recreational Equipment, Inc.) for her winning design, which will appear on the Park Authority’s website and on t-shirts that will be given to Take Back the Forest volunteers during April and May.
Moon’s design displays a leafy, invasive vine winding around the words “Take Back the Forest.” Moon said she wanted the design to “show that there’s a possibility to change” and that “volunteering can impact the forest.”
Take Back the Forest is a promotional part of the Fairfax County Park Authority’s Invasive Management Area (IMA) program. IMA is a volunteer-based program designed to reduce invasive plants on parkland. IMA Coordinator Erin Stockschlaeder said the agency’s 2014 goal with Take Back the Forest is to host 650 volunteers at its 40 IMA sites throughout the county in April and May.
REI awarded the agency’s Invasive Management Area (IMA) program a $10,000 grant to support Take Back the Forest. REI has backed the program with $35,000 in grants over the past three years.
REI is a national outdoor retailer dedicated to inspiring, educating and outfitting its members and the community for a lifetime of outdoor adventure and stewardship. Founded in 1938 by a group of Pacific Northwest mountaineers seeking quality equipment, REI is committed to promoting environmental stewardship and increasing access to outdoor recreation through volunteerism, gear donations and financial contributions.
For information about Take Back the Forest and the IMA program on the Park Authority’s website at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/resources/IMA/, or call Erin Stockschlaeder at 703-324-8681.