‘Trash man’ to perform at Sumter-Marengo Water Festival

Published 9:16 pm Friday, October 10, 2008

LIVINGSTON — Parents may cringe at the thought of schools excitedly exposing their fourth grader to a lot of trash talk, but that is exactly what will happen in a couple of weeks.

Steve Trash, a nationally known magician and comedian, will bring his outrageously funny and eco-conscious show to the University of West Alabama in Livingston on October 21 for the sixth annual Sumter-Marengo County Water Festival.

Trash, who lives in the backwoods of Franklin County, Alabama at a small hamlet called Frog Pond, has been traveling the world bringing his show of garbage with him. The shows combine messages about recycling with jokes, sleight-of-hand tricks and magic.

Email newsletter signup

He’s a “rockin’ eco-hero,” Allen Tartt, UWA’s director of Alabama Onsite Wastewater Association, said of Trash. “Steve’s is no ordinary school magic show. It is an excellent blend of entertainment and education tailored to the age of the students.”

“He performs magic tricks with garbage and teaches kids about ecology. What better way is there to learn about environmental principal than while you are having fun?”

Trash grew up in rural Alabama and graduated from the University of North Alabama with a degree in theater. He then spent the next eight years working as a “busker” or street performer in New York, LA, Miami and Tokyo.

Steve would gather his trash tricks, head for the local park and perform for the locals and the tourists.

Intrigued and frustrated with the amount of trash he saw lying around on the streets; Steve began to incorporate it into his act. Eventually, it was his act.

Even his home is a clear example of his eco views.

Trash built his studio/home partially into the ground which allows the natural insulative abilities of dirt to warm and cool it — called Frog Pond Manor. He and his wife even have a room dedicated to collecting recyclables.

He even has a huge pile of junk that he assures his wife, “I’m gonna use that someday….I promise.”

Over 500 students from local area schools will get the chance to see Trash in action at the water festival.

“The purpose of the this festival is to educate children about all the aspects of groundwater and other related natural resources and instill in them a general environmental awareness and stewardship ethics,” said Tartt.

The students will learn through a variety of fun activities, classroom sessions, water related experiments and entertainment.

“They will participate in hands-on learning activities focusing on the concept of groundwater, the hydraulic cycle and the groundwater’s role in the hydraulic cycle,” said Tartt. “They will also be taught the need for responsible conservation and the effect of human actions on water and all nature.”

Serving as tour guides, Tartt said volunteers from the UWA College of Education, the Sumter and Marengo Soil and Water Conservation Districts and other local organizations will be on hand during the event.

T-shirts, along with a bag filled with free posters, booklets, and other goodies, will be provided to the students and volunteers.

A t-shirt design contest has been held within the schools. The winning design will be featured on the shirts and unveiled at the festival.

Other partners for the festival include the Tombigbee Resource Conservation & Development Council, the Sumter County Extension Service, the Alabama Farmers Federation, the Sumter County Water Authority, The Alabama-Tombigbee Resource Conservation & Development Council, Alabama Power Company, and the Alabama Soil and Water Conservation Committee.

For more information about this festival or to hold a similar festival in your area, contact UWA’s Alabama OIInsite Wasterwater Association Training Center at 205-652-3803.