Gear Closet Extends Hours; Supports Clean Water Initiatives, Locally And Globally

Friday, April 18, 2014

The Gear Closet, in North Chattanooga, is extending its hours. It will be open six days a week, from Tuesday through Sunday from 12-6 p.m. each day. Earth Day gear drive can encourage the public to do some spring cleaning and donate or consign your old gear and clothing. There will also be a drop off available at Recycle Signal on Signal Mountain as part of the Recycle Challenge between Nolan and Thrasher Elementary Schools on April 26. Also on April 26, they will be at the Outdoor Expo and Gear Swap in conjunction with Outdoor Chattanooga in Coolidge Park. If needed, you can call to arrange large items to be picked up. 

The Gear Closet inventory is made up entirely of donated and consigned items which is relied upon to keep shelves stocked with outdoor gear which will in turn provide funding for the non-profit CaribbeanSEA & TenneSEA (Student Environmental Alliance) which encourages young people to lead the way to clean water. Officials said, "We will also be offering our Kids 4 Clean Water camps this summer, at four locations around the city.  Start digging through your closets and garages because your extra gear can help clean up our community’s water!"

Environmental scientist and educator Mary Beth Sutton founded Caribbean SEA 10 years ago in an effort to empower young people in the Caribbean countries such as St. Lucia, Dominica, Belize, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Curacao and Jamaica to care about and take action to protect their water.

“Tourism masks the extreme poverty in the Caribbean,” said Ms. Sutton. “That area of the world is often neglected because people only think about it in terms of tourism; however, the countries there are developing countries.”

More than 80 percent of the coral reefs in the Caribbean are dead or dying due to water pollution and climate change, Sutton explains. Caribbean SEA aims to reduce the stress on the reefs by reducing the land-based sources of pollution: sediment and sewage coming out the rivers.

“Many places in the Caribbean don’t have sewage treatment or controls for erosion or sewage,” said Ms. Sutton. “We work within the communities to help them deal with these problems. If our work is going to be sustainable, it has to start from within the community.

"Water pollution is not only a concern in the third-world countries of the Caribbean. Here in the Tennessee Valley, our rivers and streams are also contaminated due to faulty sanitation systems and pollution from industry. The Southeast is a hotspot for aquatic biological diversity, and yet our waterways have become some of the most imperiled ecosystems in the United States. That’s why Sutton expanded clean water programs to her hometown of Chattanooga five years ago through the creation of the Tennessee Student Environmental Alliance (TenneSEA). TenneSEA provides stormwater education programs, water monitoring activities for schools and communities, and Kids 4 Clean Water camp programs each summer."

  • Some recent Caribbean and Tennessee projects include:
  • Installing biogas digesters on farms in St. Lucia
  • Developing constructed wetland projects at resorts and communities in Curacao and Dominica
  • Installing green infrastructure for stormwater clean up with Red Bank High School and Thrasher Elementary School.
  • Teaching students at Kids 4 Clean Water Camps throughout the Caribbean

For more information, contact Mary Beth Sutton at 423 413-0471 or email marybeth@caribbean-sea.org.



8th Annual EMS Week Bass Tournament Set For Monday

May 20-26, 2018 is National EMS Week.  In Chattanooga, officials will be celebrating and recognizing emergency service personnel by holding the eighth annual EMS Week Bass Tournament at Chester Frost Park Boat Ramp on Monday. Emergency medical technicians, paramedics, firefighters, police officers and hospital personnel throughout the Tennessee, Georgia, and South Carolina ... (click for more)

New State And World Record Black Crappie Caught By Loudon County Angler, Pending DNA Confirmation

Pending results from DNA testing, an angler from Philadelphia, Tn. will own the state and world record for a black crappie, breaking a state record that’s been held for 33 years. On Tuesday, Lionel Ferguson, better known as “Jam,” went to a pond in Loudon County to cast a line.  Before sunset, he had landed a black crappie that eclipses the old state record by a huge margin…and ... (click for more)

Man And Woman Killed In Sunday Morning Murder/Suicide At Hixson Gas Station

A man and a woman were killed in a Sunday morning murder/homicide at a gas station in Hixson. The shooting was shortly after 10 a.m. at a Shell station at Hixson Pike and Brookaire.  Upon arrival, police located Kimberly Phillips, 48, lying in the parking lot from an apparent gunshot wound.  Also in the same parking lot, officers located Frederick Tragresser, 47, ... (click for more)

$2,060,705 Tennessee Cash Jackpot Won In South Pittsburg Friday Night

A Tennessee Cash player in South Pittsburg won a near-record jackpot of $2,060,705 on  Friday  night. A Knoxville Powerball player won $50,000  Saturday  night by matching four of the five white numbers drawn plus the red Powerball. No information is available about the winners until the prizes are claimed. The  $315.3 million ... (click for more)

Brown V. Board (1954) 64 Years Late: Our Schools At A Crossroads

May 17, 1954 is a date forever etched upon the annals of American history because on that pivotal day the Supreme Court would affirm in the decision of Brown v. Board (1954). “We conclude that in the field of public education the doctrine of ‘separate but equal’ has no place. Separate educational facilities are inherently unequal.” This ruling overturned the infamous Plessy v. Ferguson ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Same Family Tree

When it was learned the UnifiEd Foundation was a left-wing crowd of political organizers rather than a group with the sole intent of bettering public education in Hamilton County, several other liberal groups fell under scrutiny and it is uncanny how many of the same few people are intertwined in a county of 360,000 people. Or, as one critic succinctly said, “They are all from ... (click for more)