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Eau Claire Home & Garden Show Helps Students Gain Experience

‚ÄčThe Home & Garden Show in Eau Claire is an annual event that thousands of people in the community attend. Not everyone knows all the hard work some of the CVTC students put into this event to help make it a success.

Students in the Landscape, Plant & Turf Management-Horticulture and the Residential Construction programs put in a lot of time and effort to showcase their programs during this event.

Landscape, Plant & Turf Management-Horticulture

For this year's show, the Landscape, Plant & Turf Management-Horticulture students set up four areas highlighting options people have when it comes to using plants. They included an area showing the importance of interior plants to indoor living, creating an outdoor living area, planting a family garden and conserving water when gardening.

Not only did the students write the information handed out in fliers, but they also designed the space they were given, choosing what areas they wanted to show off. None of this could have been done without the generous donations from a number of local businesses, including Building Hope, UltraDeck, Midwest Manufacturing, Green Oasis Gardens, Karl's Pro-Snap, May's Floral and Garden and Dusti Larson and Shawn Bartholomew. From donated plants to concrete pavers, they allowed the students to demonstrate their creative ideas and talents.

Students ended their experience by organizing a plant sale. All money raised goes toward scholarships for Landscape, Plant & Turf Management-Horticulture and Residential Construction students.

"We have a great partnership with the Chippewa Valley Home Builders Association," states Susan Frame, instructor with the Landscape, Plant & Turf Management-Horticulture program at CVTC. "They allow us to show off our programs, and our students gain so much from everything they do for the event. An event like this is so valuable to our students' education."

Residential Construction

The Residential Construction students worked closely with the Landscape, Plant & Turf Management-Horticulture students to help build the supporting structures needed for the booth spaces. The structures this year included a garden trellis, a small house with a shed roof representing a green roof, a mock up of a wall section for the outdoor living area and a raised bed that was wheelchair accessible for planting gardening items.

"We teach residential construction, but it's important for our students to use their skills in more ways," state Brian Barth, instructor with the Residential Construction program. "These are talented students, and it is a good way to show off their talents."

Not only do these students help build these supporting structures, they are also the glue that makes set-up and take down so easy for the vendors. Time White, Owner of Overhead Door Company of the Chippewa Valley, says that the students arrive early to unload their equipment for the event, and in no time, everything is in the booth space. It's always difficult to have so many vendors coming at once to an event like this, but having the students from CVTC helping has made things go so much smoother. They are invaluable piece to the success of this event."