The Fightin' IRIS Awards
The Fightin' IRIS Awards recognize people, businesses, and other organizations in Monroe County who have made a real difference in fighting invasive plants in the county. Each year, winners are chosen from among all those who are working to help reduce the impacts of invasive plants.
Housing and Neighborhood Development (HAND), Doris Sims and Vickie Provine (Partnership Award)
Doris and Vickie have showed forward-thinking energy and open mindedness in supporting MC-IRIS. They quickly grasped the scope and the urgency of reducing invasive plants in Bloomington neighborhoods and partnered with us to do something about it.
Based on their suggestion and financial support to host a city park workshop, MC-IRIS was able to host an event to address Invasive plant ID and removal techniques, Native plant ID and Neighborhood Native Landscaping options, and to underscore how Neighborhoods can make a difference to increase our native plant base and buffer our forests. In addition, their creative thinking has opened the HAND Small and Simple Grant for neighborhoods to use for similar educational purposes.
Nancy Anderson (Action Award)
Nancy has been helping to organize her neighborhood, Park Ridge East, to take on invasive plants and plant native plants for the last few years. She organized getting her neighborhood entered into a Clean Water Indiana grant agreement to fund invasive control and native plantings. She helped coordinate the native plant exchange in her neighborhood this spring and has helped at just about every tabling and work day MC-IRIS has put on. When you need help, she is there! For all she has done to help MC-IRIS in so many ways, promote the invasive plant message in her neighborhood, and inspire other citizens to get involved, we are honored to give Nancy an Action Award.
Desirae and Nate Draluck (Action Award)
Desirae and Nate Draluck receive this Action award for the incredible amount of work they have put into removing invasive plants from their yard in Bryan Park neighborhood. (Hand out picture) They moved to Indiana from Florida where they had already learned about the threat that invasive plants pose. Once they learned about the invasive plants of Indiana they found out the house and yard they just bought had most of them. This summer they came to the Bryan Park neighborhood Invasive Control workshop, they borrowed a Weed Wrench from the tool loan program, and they went to work. By the time I did an invasive survey for them last month, they had already made phenomenal progress. In addition to doing all this work, they shared it on the INPAWS Facebook group, letting others know what they have accomplished and inspiring them. For their hard work on invasive control and serving as a positive example for other homeowners in Bloomington, we are pleased to award them this Action award.
Gillian Field (Action Award)
In December of 2016 MC-IRIS got an email from Gillian Field wanting to know if we could put on an invasive control workshop in her neighborhood, Grandview Hills. We had no idea that that request would be the spark that started a whole new chapter for MC-IRIS. Gillian is an unstoppable force filled with a creative energy and persistence. She has championed and pursued organizing neighborhoods around invasive plant control and native plantings and in the process has created a model for neighborhoods to follow that is still rippling through Bloomington. Just some of the things she has taken on: