May: Team Farewells & Sustainable Summers


As the school year comes to an end, it is sad for the Live Green! Team to say goodbye to our 2022-2023 year of adventure; but we are also looking forward to some exciting endeavors coming up this summer. Read on to see each team member’s favorite Live Green! memory and what we have planned for this summer.

Summer 2023 Plans


Merry Rankin

Summer plans: Live Green! has SO many plans for summer! New student orientation, College Cleanup, Rummage Rampage and completing a number of exciting sustainability projects and products to have in place for next year. 

Favorite memory: Each year it is especially exhilarating to watch each team member find their stride in their roles and then just TAKE OFF. I absolutely love that moment when the team leads me. I am always SO impressed, SO inspired and SO proud to be a part of their team.


Noah Weber

Summer plans: This summer I will continue working will Live Green! to assist in the planning of events over the summer, participate in Iowa State orientation, as well as begin planning for the next school year! I will also be continuing my architecture internship in Des Moines at CMBA Architects.

Favorite memory: My favorite Live Green! memory from the last year was Sustainapalooza! It was such a large and successful event and it was such a learning experience for me in my position.


Haylie Moore

Summer plans: I will be spending the majority of my summer interning at the Inter-American Institute for the Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) in San José, Costa Rica. There, I’ll be working on a project related to using technology to monitor extreme weather events that could pose a threat to the agri-food system. I’m excited to combine a really cool internship opportunity that relates to the field of agriculture with exploration, travel, and a chance to practice my Spanish!

Favorite memory: My favorite Live Green! memory thus far has definitely been planning and participating in our annual Sustainapalooza event. It was an incredibly rewarding experience to see so many people from the community interact with the various pieces, all while learning about unique ways they can implement sustainability in their own lives. That event reminded me of the intent and purpose of this internship.

Haley Wegener

Summer plans: I will be continuing my internship with Live Green! I will also be traveling to tour some law schools that I am interested in, along with lots of studying for the LSAT that I plan on taking in August.

Favorite memory: My favorite Live Green! memory was Sustainapalooza because it was a chance for many sustainable groups around Ames to come together and celebrate sustainability. It was also very rewarding because I was able to see all of my hard work pay off in one fun event.


Grant Buresh

Summer plans: Traveling to Uganda and participating in the service learning program. This program works within the Kamuli District and assists in school garden work as well as teaching students. I will also be completing an internship with some of the staff relating to sustainable building design and green spaces.

Favorite memory: I would have to say working the Sustainapalooza event and interacting with individuals who are passionate about sustainability. Overall volunteering at events is great because it allows all of the work that we do behind the scenes to come to light and allow everyone to see all of the things that the office of sustainability is doing.

Shelby Nechkash

Summer plans: This summer I have an internship back home in Wisconsin. I will be working on the sustainability team for a plastic thermoforming company to break down their reported emissions on a per customer basis and research a life cycle analysis estimate for their main customers while quantifying the difference between new plastic and recycled. I’m also really looking forward to my Aunt’s wedding and a family vacation at Castle Rock Lake.

Favorite memory: Working at the Farmer’s Market was probably one of my favorite things to do this year. Talking to everyone about the Smart Energy program and answering any questions was really fun. I’m looking forward to working with them again this summer and fall!


Maddie Judas

Summer plans: Planning on working with Live Green! This summer and helping with event planning, tabling, etc! As for fun plans I will be penny boarding quite a bit and just enjoying the outdoors!!!!

Favorite memory: My favorite live green memory would probably be the retreats or campus sustainability month celebration!

Elizabeth Smith

Summer plans: I will be working a lot (including helping out with the College Creek Cleanup and Rummage RAMPage!), but will also be spending plenty of time outdoors, as well as reading as many books as possible and doing plenty of work with watercolor painting. My family rents a cabin in Wisconsin every summer, so I’m really excited for that!

Favorite memory: The Earth Day Celebration! It’s always so exciting to see so many people interested in learning more about sustainability.


Leah Zuber

Summer plans: For the first month of summer I will be studying abroad on a graphic design trip to London and Amsterdam. Afterwards, I will definitely just be relaxing by the pool, penny boarding, and baking!

Favorite memory: My favorite memory from this year would have to be working at Sustainapalooza. I got to walk around, take photos, and talk to people passionate about sustainability!!

Good luck to everyone on their future endeavors! We are busy finalizing the 2023-2024 Live Green! Team, so stay tuned for our 2023-2024 “Meet the Team” blog, this fall.

Summer Opportunities to Live Green! in Ames

The Ames community has so many sustainability events and opportunities each summer. Here are some of our team’s favorites.

May 12-14

The Plant Sale Extravaganza supports the Department of Ecology, Evolution, & Organismal Biology Graduate Student Organization, the Graduate Student Horticulture Society, the ISU Horticulture Club, Reiman Gardens, and the Story County Master Gardener Association. All plant purchases directly benefit each group’s programming. The Plant Sale Extravaganza includes perennials for sun and shade, herbs and vegetables, Iowa natives, woody plants including trees, shrubs and Buck roses, specialty evergreens, container annuals, hanging baskets, All-American Selection  winning vegetables and herbs, and prefinished mixed containers. To learn more about the sale, check out the Reiman Gardens website.

**Also at Reiman Gardens!! Free admission days are happening throughout the summer on Mother’s Day (all mothers receive free admission), Father’s Day (all fathers receive free admission day) and Educator’s Day (all educators receive free admission).

June 2-3

This year, there will be a modified celebration combining Scandinavian Days and National Carousel Day together. Carousel Day is all thanks to Bette Largent, President of the National Carousel Association, and Ronald Hopkins, a carousel historian. The holiday was created to celebrate carousels and their joyful addition to society. On the other hand, Scandinavian Days began in 1965 as part of the Syttende Mai celebration, or Norwegian Constitution Day, that Story City’s Immanuel Lutheran Church held each year. Since then the festival has seen many changes, but Scandinavian Days still rings true to its roots with traditional foods, folklore and a rich pride of the community’s heritage. To learn more about this celebration, check out the Story City Greater Chamber Connection events calendar. 

June 24

In recognition of National Rivers Month in June, the Live Green! Initiative and Keep Iowa State Beautiful team up with Facilities Planning and Management for the annual College Creek Cleanup. College Creek is the main waterway found throughout campus, often becoming ground zero for numerous pounds of trash. In an effort to keep this waterway clean, volunteers from both campus (students, faculty and staff) and the Ames community walk the creek and its surrounding banks, filling bags of trash along the way. This event brings together individuals from all walks of life, melding an environmentally-minded activity into a socially-worthwhile volunteer opportunity! To find more information regarding this event, check out the “Green Events” tab on the Live Green! website.

July 6-9

Ames Public Library‘s used book store and cafe is the perfect place to unwind or to shop for used books that look like new! Stop by the Ames Public Library for their summer book sale on July 6-9. Learn more information about additional book sales during the summer and throughout the year on the Ames Public Library website.

July 9

Reiman Gardens is proud to host their 19th annual Garden Art Fair. Come enjoy the work of new and returning artists who will be displaying and selling their garden and nature inspired art featuring jewelry, painting, pottery, woodwork, glass, home décor, photography, sculpture, fabric arts, and more. While here, visitors can view and buy a variety of high quality art as well as enjoy all of the Gardens’ features: the summer blooms, the annual sculpture exhibit, the Hughes Conservatory, the Christina Reiman Butterfly Wing, and the Gift Shop. Find more information about the art fair on the Reiman Gardens website.

July 28-August 5

The City of Ames, in partnership with the ISU Office of Sustainability, annually hosts “Rummage RAMPage,” a community sale designed to keep reusable items out of the waste stream. The event grew from the desire to repurpose items often left on the curb during the annual move out and lease changeovers, and to keep these items out of the landfill. Rummage RAMPage works by selling items that are donated. Non-profit agencies commit volunteer hours to help run the sale and, in turn, share in the proceeds. The event is open to everyone to donate or shop. Learn more on the City of Ames Rummage Rampage webpage.

August 4-6

Pufferbilly Days, Boone celebrates its deep rail history and well-loved quirky traditions within the packed, weekend-long festival. Join for live music, area sporting events, kids activities, the annual parade, fun contests and so much more. Check out the Events tab on the Boone County website to learn more. 

August 10-20

The Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines is Iowa’s great celebration, a salute to the state’s best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. To learn more, check out the Iowa State Fair website.

August 25-26

Lincoln Highway Days will be celebrated on the last weekend in August. The Lincoln Highway is the first transcontinental highway in the United States and one of the first highways designed expressly for automobiles. The Lincoln Highway runs coast-to-coast from Times Square in New York City west to Lincoln Park in San Francisco. Whether you’re running the 5k, watching the parade or lassoing your friends to join you at the Rodeo, there’s fun planned for the whole family. Events are being planned throughout the community. To find more information about this event, check out the Lincoln Highway Days website.


The Ames farmers markets are a great way to get involved this summer. The Ames Main Street Farmers Market is truly a community event that  brings people together from the surrounding area to enjoy the bounty of locally grown produce, delicious baked goods and beautifully hand crafted items. Led by the Ames Chamber of Commerce, the Ames Main Street Farmers’ Market is a bigger, more exciting and provides a showcase for consumers to buy directly from Local Iowa vendors/producers offering seasonal fresh fruit, vegetables, meats, cheeses, arts, crafts, fresh flowers, plants and much more. The North Grand Indoor Farmers’ Market is located across the hall next to RelaxStation. This market offers seasonal produce, baked goods, honey, popcorn, jellies, jams, and much more. To find more information on Ames and surrounding markets, visit 

To learn more about how to have a sustainability-filled summer, be sure to check out the “Now You Know” article in the Live Green! May Newsletter. Providing you with an abundance of the tips and tricks necessary to have a successful sustainable summer. 

As always, please consider the Live Green! Leadership Team as your sustainable resource for connection to information, events and opportunities to get involved with sustainability on campus, and also throughout the community. We will see you next fall for another year full of tips, resources, connections. Be sure to follow Live Green! on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to stay updated on our summer endeavors.


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