Youth Environmental Day

​About

The first Youth Environmental Day was conducted on May 16, 1964, at Holley River State Park. Today, the event is celebrated annually at North Bend State Park, the third Saturday in May. Hundreds of participants annually attend. Highlighting the activities is the presentation of more than $15,000 in cash awards and scholarships in recognition of outstanding environmental accomplishments by the youth groups enrolled in the program.

Special guests may include the governor, the DEP cabinet secretary, representatives from several award sponsors and dignitaries. Many exhibits are featured, including the WV Division of Forestry, West Virginia State Parks, Raptor Rehabilitation, REAP, West Virginia Division of Natural Resources Law Enforcement featuring Eddie Eagle and Robo Deer, and many more.

Camping is available for those participants wanting to stay for the weekend. Lunch on Saturday is also provided free to all participants.

Contact Us

For more information, please contact us.

Annette Hoskins
601 57th Street SE
Charleston, WV 25304
Phone: (304) 926-0499 x49759
Fax: (304) 957-0338
Email: Annette.L.Hoskins@wv.gov


​2022 Youth Day

After two consecutive years of cancellations because of the pandemic, Youth Environmental Day returned in-person to North Bend State Park on May 21. Hundreds of YEP members and their families enjoyed a warm, sunny day that included an awards ceremony, lunch and other activities. The YEP awarded groups and individuals more than $15,000 in cash prizes for their outstanding work in environmental and conservation projects.


2022 Award Winners

Maple Award (Tree Planting)

The $300 Maple Award is presented to the youth group completing the best tree planting project.

Winner: Wardensville Garden Market Junior Crew, Hardy County

Go-Mart Corporation Energy Essay Awards

The Go-Mart Corporation has provided two awards for winning essays entitled "Climate Change: How It Affects West Virginia".

Winner (ages 12 and under): Matthew Carothers, Meadow Bridge Clovers, Fayette County
Winner (ages 12 and up): Victoria Croucher, The Croucher Family, Hampshire County

Environmental Achievement Award

The $300 Environmental Achievement award is presented to a newly enrolled youth group that has shown the most progress through participation in community environmental projects.

Winner: Fayette County Gifted Program, Fayette County


Governor Jim Justice Beautification Awards

Youth Beautification Award is presented to the youth group that completes the most outstanding job of community litter prevention, clean-up and beautification.

First Place - $500: Cow Creek Hi-Strivers 4-H Club, Putnam County
Second Place - $300: Mrs. Wamsley’s 4th Grade at Midland Elementary, Randolph County
Third Place - $200: Slanesville Mustang Garden, Hampshire County

DEP Cabinet Secretary Harold Ward Brook Trout Kindergarten Award

This $200 award is presented to the Kindergarten group that completes the most outstanding environmental projects.

Winner: Hardy County Regional Youth Center, Hardy County


DuPont Washington Works Plastic Recycling Awards

DuPont Washington Works sponsors these Plastic Recycling Awards. DuPont encourages reducing and reusing plastic items whenever possible and reminds us to recycle all plastics. These awards are presented to the youth groups having completed the most exceptional project(s) that integrate recycling a variety of plastics.

First Place - $300: Belleville 4-H Club, Wood County
Second Place - $200: Mountaineers 4-H Club, Mason County

Save Our Streams (SOS) Award

This $300 award is given to the youth group whose project(s) meets the goals of the Save Our Streams (SOS) Program, which are increasing West Virginia’s ability to monitor the quality of state rivers and streams and enhancing public awareness of the need for their protection.

Winner: Girl Scout Troop 14029, Hardy County

Environmental Education Award

The Environmental Education Award is presented to the youth group that has completed the most outstanding work in environmental education by creating public awareness on environmental issues.

Winner: Valley Livestock 4-H Club, Randolph County


Rick Vecellio Memorial Conservation Scholarship

This scholarship is presented to an active Youth Environmental Program member with exemplary conduct throughout his/her school years. Recipient will receive $2,500 per year for 4 years. The scholarship is made available by the Vecellio Family Foundation, Inc., Beckley.

Winner: Andrew Francis, Comet Cardinals 4-H and Ravenswood High School, Jackson County

Andrew Francis, Jackson County, Winner of Rick Vecellio Memorial Scholarship
Andrew Francis, Jackson County, Winner of Rick Vecellio Memorial Scholarship

West Virginia Forestlands & Wood Products Art Awards

These $150 awards are for art creations that promote West Virginia’s Forest Resources or wood products created from these forests.

Winner: Cade and Austin Blackshire, Letart Pioneers 4-H Club, Mason County

Cade and Austin Blackshire, Mason County, Winners of the West Virginia Forestlands and Wood Products Art Award
Cade and Austin Blackshire, Mason County, Winners of the West Virginia Forestlands and Wood Products Art Award

Sustainable Forestry Art Poster Award

A $150 award will be presented for the posted that expresses ideas on Sustainable Forestry which involves the management of hardwood forests through natural regeneration.

Winner: Emmalea Warden, Haer Bears 4-H Club, Mason County

Emmalea Warden, Haer Bears 4-H Club, Mason County, winner of Sustainable Forestry Art Poster Award
Emmalea Warden, Haer Bears 4-H Club, Mason County, winner of Sustainable Forestry Art Poster Award

Bear Category Environmental Awards

These awards are presented to youth groups completing projects that answer an environmental need, whose members are ages 12-14 years.

First Place - $500: Winfield Scotts 4-H Club, Putnam County
Second Place - $300: Young Riders 4-H Club, Lewis County
Third Place - $200: Leading Creek 4-H Club, Randolph County

Winfield Scotts 4-H Club, Putnam County, winners of the Bear Awards Environmental Projects
Winfield Scotts 4-H Club, Putnam County, winners of the Bear Awards Environmental Projects

Cardinal Art Poster Awards

Cardinal Art Posters must depict an environmental theme. Winners will receive either a scholarship to Junior Conservation Camp, or WV State Conservation Camp.

Winner: Lilly Hershman, Sandy Pals 4-H Club, Preston County
Winner: Jadyn Snodgrass, Cow Creek Hi-Strivers 4-H Club, Putnam County

Sandy Pals 4-H Club, Preston County, winner of the Cardinal Art Poster Awards
Sandy Pals 4-H Club, Preston County, winner of the Cardinal Art Poster Awards

Rick Vecellio Memorial Art Poster Awards

Memorial Art Poster Awards are also given for posters that depict an environmental theme. 5 winners receive $100 each - Made available by Leo Vecellio Jr., Beckley in memory of his mother Evelyn Vecellio.

Winners:

  • Levi Blain, Busy 4’s 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Brayden Collins, Road Runners 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Emily Carothers, Meadow Bridge Girl Scout Troop 31897, Fayette County
  • Isaiah Fannin, Road Runners 4-H Club, Mason County
  • Austin Blackshire, Letart Pioneers 4-H Club, Mason County

Levi Blain, Busy 4’s 4-H Club, Mason County, winner of the Rick Vecellio Memorial Art Poster Award
Levi Blain, Busy 4’s 4-H Club, Mason County, winner of the Rick Vecellio Memorial Art Poster Award

Litter Control Awards

These $600 awards are for the youth groups that have completed the most successful litter clean-up projects.

First Place - $300: Deer Creek Defenders 4-H Club, Pocahontas County
Second Place - $200: Buffalo High School, Putnam County
Third Place - $100: Busy 4’s 4-H Club, Mason County

Busy 4’s 4-H Club, Mason County, winner of the Litter Control Award
Busy 4’s 4-H Club, Mason County, winner of the Litter Control Award

Keep West Virginia Beautiful Awards

The Keep West Virginia Beautiful First and Second Place Awards are presented for the most outstanding litter prevention project conducted for a school.

First Place - $300: Lubeck Lucky Clovers 4-H Club, Wood County
Second Place - $200: North Fork 4-H Club, Pendleton County

Lubeck Lucky Clovers 4-H Club, Wood County, winners of the Keep West Virginia Beautiful Awards
Lubeck Lucky Clovers 4-H Club, Wood County, winners of the Keep West Virginia Beautiful Awards

Mountain Laurel Category Environmental Awards

Mountain Laurel Category recognizes youth groups that have completed projects addressing an environmental need, whose members are ages 6-11.

First Place - $500: Frametown Girl Scout Troop, Braxton County
Second Place - $300: Girl Scouts of Black Diamond Council Troop #1895, Fayette County
Third Place - $200: Pee Wee Go Getters 4-H Club, Wirt County

Frametown Girl Scout Troop, Braxton County, winners of the Mountain Laurel Awards
Frametown Girl Scout Troop, Braxton County, winners of the Mountain Laurel Awards

Youth Environmental Hall of Fame Awards

The Youth Environmental Hall of Fame Awards go to an outstanding girl and boy who are nominated based on their extensive involvement in their club’s community environmental activities. Each winner received $200.

First Place Girl of the Year: Emily Carothers, Meadow Bridge GST 31897, Fayette County
First Place Boy of the Year: Logan Hatfield, Wyoming County HS-Friends of the Earth Club, Wyoming County

Logan Hatfield, Wyoming County High Friends of Earth Club, Wyoming County, first place boy of the year for the Youth Environmental Hall of Fame Award
Logan Hatfield, Wyoming County High Friends of Earth Club, Wyoming County, first place boy of the year for the Youth Environmental Hall of Fame Award

Recycling Awards

The Recycling Awards are presented to youth groups with the best overall recycling projects.

First Place - $300: Haer Bears 4-H Club, Mason County
Second Place - $200: Fairview 4-H Club, Wood County
Third Place - $100: Pt Pleasant HS Environmental Buddy Club, Mason County

Haer Bears 4-H Club, Mason County, winners of the Recycling Awards
Haer Bears 4-H Club, Mason County, winners of the Recycling Awards

Mountain State Award of Excellence

This $500 award is for clubs that have won first place the last two years in the Mountain Laurel, Bear and Rhododendron categories and previous Mountain State Award of Excellence winners only.

Winner: The Highland School Hawks Conservation Club, Ritchie County

The Highland School Hawks Conservation Club, Ritchie County, winners of the Mountain State Award of Excellence
The Highland School Hawks Conservation Club, Ritchie County, winners of the Mountain State Award of Excellence

Recycling Education and Awareness Awards

Education and Awareness awards are given to the youth groups with the best community recycling education and awareness project based on club and community involvement.

First Place - $300: Hillbillie 4-H Club, Mason County
Second Place - $200: Shooting Stars 4-H Club, Mason County

Hillbillie 4-H Club, Mason County, winners of the Recycling Education and Awareness Award
Hillbillie 4-H Club, Mason County, winners of the Recycling Education and Awareness Award

District Coordinators' Awards

These awards are given to youth groups in each of the six districts in recognition of their overall community environmental efforts. Each winner received $200.

District 1: Sandy Pals 4-H Club, Preston County
District 2: Boy Scout Troop 32, Hampshire County
District 3: Green Bank Public Library Community, Pocahontas County
District 4: Hinton Helping Hands, Summers County
District 5: Clover STEMs, Putnam County
District 6: Morristown Mountaineers 4-H Club, Wirt County

Sandy Pals 4-H Club, Preston County, winner of the District 1 Coordinator Award
Sandy Pals 4-H Club, Preston County, winner of the District 1 Coordinator Award
Clover Stems, Putnam County, winner of the District 5 Coordinator Award
Clover Stems, Putnam County, winner of the District 5 Coordinator Award

Wildlife Management Award

This $300 award is presented to youth group completing a wildlife management project that encompass food, water and cover for West Virginia’s wildlife, especially during the winter months.

Winner: Sand Hill Explorers 4-H Club, Wood County

Sand Hill Explorers 4-H Club, Wood County, winners of the Wildlife Management Award
Sand Hill Explorers 4-H Club, Wood County, winners of the Wildlife Management Award

Streams and Trails Award

The Streams and Trails Awards go to the youth groups that have shown the most effort in cleaning a stream and/or building or maintaining a trail.

First Place - $300: New Haven Elementary School, Mason County
Second Place - $200: Letart Pioneers 4-H Club, Mason County

New Haven Elementary, Mason County, winners of the Streams and Trails award.
New Haven Elementary, Mason County, winners of the Streams and Trails award.

Rhododendron Category Environmental Awards

The Rhododendron Awards are presented to youth groups completing projects that answer an environmental need, whose members are ages 15 years and older.

First Place - $500: Teens For Change, Kanawha County
Second Place - $300: The Croucher Family, Hampshire County
Third Place - $200: Mineral County FFA, Mineral County

Teens for Change, Kanawha County, winners of the Rhododendron Awards
Teens for Change, Kanawha County, winners of the Rhododendron Awards

Watershed Protection Award

This $300 award is given to the youth group that shows the most effort in watershed protection, education and community awareness.

Winner: Wyoming East High School Friends of the Earth, Wyoming County

Wyoming East High School Friends of the Earth, Wyoming County, winners of the Watershed Protection Award
Wyoming East High School Friends of the Earth, Wyoming County, winners of the Watershed Protection Award

REAP Adopt-A-Spot Award

This award is presented to the youth group with an Adopt-A-Spot that has maintained the spot with three reported cleanups and that has planted and maintained flowers on the spot for each blooming season.

Winner: Bridge Creek Bandits 4-H Club, Putnam County

Bridge Creek Bandits 4-H, Putnam County, winners of the REAP Adopt-A-Spot Award
Bridge Creek Bandits 4-H, Putnam County, winners of the REAP Adopt-A-Spot Award

REAP Recycling Video Award

These awards were created for those youth groups wishing to step up their involvement in environmental activities by creating a Recycling Power Point Presentation.

Winner: Wyoming East High School, Friends of the Earth, Wyoming County

Wyoming East High School Friends of Earth Club, Wyoming County, winners of the REAP Recycling Video Award
Wyoming East High School Friends of Earth Club, Wyoming County, winners of the REAP Recycling Video Award

West Virginia State Parks Superintendents Association Awards

This award category was established by the late Steve Boler, past Superintendent of Pipestem Resort State Park, to foster relationships between local youth groups and state parks, forests and wildlife management areas and sponsored by the West Virginia State Parks Superintendents’ Association.

First Place - $300: Meadow Bridge Girl Scout Troop 31897, Fayette County
Second Place - $200: Haer Bears, Mason County

Haer Bears, Mason County, winners of the WV State Parks Superintendents Association Award
Haer Bears, Mason County, winners of the WV State Parks Superintendents Association Award

2021 Award Winners Announced

During this past year, YEP groups worked over 20,000 hours to recycle more than 13,000 pounds of aluminum, 39,000 pounds of plastic, 51,000 pounds of steel and 49,000 pounds of paper. They also planted 1,034 trees, more than 1,500 flowers and cleaned up 75 miles of roadways, in addition to community areas and streams. Groups collected 255 bags of trash.

2021 YEP Award Winners

2021 Youth Environmental Program award winners

2021 Award Winners

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