MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Opinion

June 14, 2013

THANK YOU 06.15.13

“OKLAHOMA, where the wind comes sweeping down the plain….” Sadler 7th and 8th grade students are quite familiar with the song that celebrates the wonderful state of Oklahoma. Now, thanks to the efforts and generosity of many, these 42 students have a new understanding of the meaning of these familiar words.

From May 13 to 18, Sadler students traveled to the far Western corner and back to the Eastern edge of Oklahoma. In between these far reaches, Sadler students had the opportunity to collect the type of salt crystals found only on the Great Salt Plains of Oklahoma; stepped down into the colorful Alabaster Caverns; saw the buffalo and prairie dogs of the Wichita Mountains; climbed upon the history-rich Robber's Cave near Wilburton; and ended their trip eating in an old passenger train-car-turned restaurant in Heavener.

 During the 2012-2013 school year, Sadler students, staff, and parents worked relentlessly to raise enough money to take this eye-opening trip. Yet many people beyond Sadler made this trip not only possible, but an unforgettable experience. Locally, businesses, civic groups, clubs, and individuals provided funding as well as time for various fundraising activities. Across the state, research scientists at OU and the Sam Noble Research Center shared their expertise in areas of cancer research and preservation of ecosystems. Individuals in Black Mesa took time from busy schedules to escort our group onto their land for private showings of ancient carved signatures and cave drawings. To every locale Sadler students traveled and to each placed visited, people went out of their way to be gracious, informative, and helpful. To all who made this experience possible and memorable, Sadler students and staff give a heartfelt “Thank you!”

Sadler Arts Academy met its goal for our students to gain a firsthand knowledge of the depth and breadth of the resources, history, and landmarks found only in Oklahoma. As they traveled down the road, Sadler students did indeed celebrate one mile at a time the wonders of Oklahoma and that undeniably “the land we belong to is grand!”

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