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Students pitch in to help
For many high school students, summer vacation is spent with friends at the beach or swimming pool enjoying the sun and time off from school.

But for members of the Gathering Place, a Christian program, Thursday was a time for work and lending a helping hand.

High school students from Brunswick High, Glynn Academy and Frederica Academy were happy to help clean up the playground at Howard Coffin Park. Many neighborhood families take their children to play at the park at U.S. 17 and Gloucester Street.

"We have college interns and nearly 100 local high school students every summer," said Lucas Ramirez, executive director of the Gathering Place. "A part of their weekly program is community service and every Thursday is built for that."

Their goal is to become more involved in the community, and what better way than to serve their own community, Ramirez added.

"We wanted to team up with the city and help clean up this park," he said.

When asked by Ramirez if the group could help out at the playground, Mayor Bryan Thompson responded with an ecstatic affirmative.

"I even said I would help them," Thompson said.

Thompson joined the group of 30 students in replacing sand in the playground's sandbox, bleaching and pressure washing the playground structure, mulching and cleaning up landscape.

The city struggles with the upkeep of its many parks and squares, so any outside volunteer help is appreciated, Thompson added.

"It's a good project for them and it's a good project for us to help get things done," Thompson said.

Two other student groups were on hand to help out at other locations in Glynn County.

Keeping students active in service is an integral part of what they learn as a part of the Gathering Place.

"Getting them out there doing service and meeting people is important," Ramirez said. "We teach them to be leaders, and you do that by being a servant. This is a platform to exercise that."

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