Contractors working for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Pittsburgh District install a 23-foot-tall concrete shaft enclosure weighing approximately 120,000 pounds as part of the guard wall at the Monongahela River Locks and Dam 4 in Charleroi, Pennsylvania, Nov. 16, 2023.

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Partnering with the Planet: Nashville District Celebrates Earth Day

Nashville District Public Affairs Office
Published April 6, 2023
A poster showing an Army soldier and pictures of flowers with the words Earth Day 2023.

U.S. Army celebrates Earth Day as a way to sustain the mission and secure the future.

Overview of Martins Fork Lake, located in Harlan County, Kentucky.

Overview of Martins Fork Lake, located in Harlan County, Kentucky.

A view of Lake Barkley

This is a view of Lake Barkley on the Cumberland River in Grand Rivers, Kentucky, where the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District manages the natural resources. (USACE Photo by Leon Roberts)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (April 6, 2023) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District joins the rest of the nation in observing Earth Day, which is Saturday, April 22. While the Nashville District is committed to the principles of environmental stewardship in all efforts, across all projects, on all days, Earth Day enlists volunteers and organizations to be part of activities and partnerships that preserve and protect natural resources.

“Environmental stewardship is a fundamental operating principle in the Nashville District," said Lt. Col. Joseph Sahl, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District commander. "The district has designated environmental stewardship as a focus area for each April.  This emphasizes an important area by promoting the business line, engaging stakeholders and publicizing activities."

Several locations throughout the Nashville District area of responsibility are hosting community events aimed at engaging the public and creating meaningful partnerships.

Trey Church, chief, Operations Section, Operations Division said, “Each year on April 22, Nashville District projects hold Earth Day events to bring this message to the forefront and influence behavioral changes to protect our natural resources. The Park Ranger staff, district-wide, promotes initiatives to decrease pollution, deforestation, and litter in the local areas they serve.  These activities, are a great way to promote community involvement and comradery with the agency.”

Cheatham Lake

At Cheatham Lake, a local cub scout group will volunteer to perform minor trail maintenance, remove invasive plants and trash, and plant native shrubs. To Tadd Potter, natural resources program manager, the annual partnership with the Cub Scouts “gives us an opportunity to protect and make improvements to the public lands we are charged to manage.”

Additional volunteers will focus on removing litter from the forest floor to support controlled burns of pine stands. These controlled burns and the subsequent effort to plant new pine seedlings to increase age diversity among the pine stands, leading to a healthier forest.

Anyone interested in volunteering at Cheatham Lake for Earth Day is encouraged to reach out to Steve Acuff, conservation biologist, at 615-792-0704 or visit the Cheatham Lake Facebook page.

Center Hill Lake

Center Hill Lake is hosting a shoreline cleanup effort at the Holmes Creek Recreation Area 8a.m. to 1p.m. April 22. Shoreline cleanups are crucial to maintaining a healthy space for visitors and wildlife. Park Ranger Remi Clarke said, “Shoreline cleanups help improve water quality by removing debris and trash that accumulates throughout the year.”

This is Clarke’s first year participating in shoreline cleanup and she is excited to join members of the community involved in the cleanup effort to protect the environment.

The staff at Center Hill Lake is providing lunch. Interested volunteers should contact Danielle Knowles at 931-858-3125 or visit the Center Hill Lake Facebook page.

Cordell Hull Lake

The Friends of Cordell Hull Lake group, in partnership with Cordell Hull Lake, are leading a hike throughout the Bear Waller Gap Hiking Trail. Participants will clean up debris and trash along the trail. Park Ranger Luciana Arena said the event is a way to “bring us all together to take pride in our recreation areas and to give back environmentally”.

Cordell Hull’s community partnerships do not end with Earth Day.  The lake staff is also hosting the annual Environmental Awareness Day on the first Thursday and Friday of May for Smith County fifth graders. This event is designed to plant the seeds of environmental stewardship and partnership early in the minds of the local youth.

To participate in the Earth Day hike, interested participants should contact Cordell Hull Lake at 615-735-1034 or visit the Cordell Hull Lake Facebook page. Participants will divide into two hiking groups, one leaving Defeated Creek Day Use area at 7:45 a.m. and the other departing at 8:15 a.m.

J. Percy Priest Lake

In partnership with the Centennial Park Conservancy, staff from J. Percy Priest will set up information booths at Centennial Park from 11a.m. to 6p.m. April 22. Park Ranger Alicia Battaglia said, “This is an opportunity to discuss water safety and inform the public of our clean up days to keep our projects and waters littler free”.  

Lake Barkley

Lake Barkley is hosting an event welcoming local volunteers and a Boy Scout troop to plant more than 45 native trees and remove trash, debris, and litter around the Hurricane Creek Campground.

Lake Cumberland

Lake Cumberland is partnering with Wolf Creek National Fish Hatchery 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. April 22 to host an environmental educational day. The Friends of Wolf Creek National Fish Hatchery are giving away free trees and providing an opportunity for the public to learn about water quality and water quality. “We hope this event will increase awareness of environmental issues and in turn, lead to citizens that are motivated to ‘Invest in our Planet,’” said Park Ranger Dylan Norton.

The partnerships established by the Nashville District are critical to the success of preserving and managing public lands. In emphasizing the value in observing Earth Day, Church said, “Earth Day highlights the importance of protecting our environment and promotes conservation and sustainability in a tangible way.”

The public can obtain news, updates and information from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District on the district’s website at, on Facebook at and on Twitter at

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Chick Lock

Through deeds, not words, we are BUILDING STRONG®