Gov. Jack Markell continued his week of public service on Saturday by joining local volunteers at the DuPont Nature Center's Winter Work Day.
Together, Markell and about 40 volunteers from Kent and Sussex counties completed numerous clean-up and repair projects at the nature center, which is owned and operated by the Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife.
The chores included bagging sand that had washed into the nature center's parking lot during Hurricane Sandy, stacking sandbags to prevent further erosion, completing repairs and maintenance to the center's observation deck, entrance road clean up, debris removal from nearby marshland and trash removal along Cedar Beach.
DNREC Secretary Collin O'Mara and Deputy DNREC Secretary David Small joined in the effort, the first of several volunteer projects planned to coincide with Markell's inauguration to a second term on Tuesday.
Markell's participation in the clean-up effort came just hour after he and U.S. Sen. Chris Coons were awarded the National Guard Association's Charles Dick Medal of Merit for their contributions to advancing the objectives of the military branch during a ceremony at Dover Downs as part of the Delaware National Guard's Senior Leaders Conference.
Markell and Lt. Gov. Matt Denn are slated to join leaders from various faiths Sunday for an inaugural interfaith prayer service at the Arts and Science Center Theater on Delaware Technical and Community College's Owens Campus in Georgetown.
Other service events scheduled around the inauguration include:
Monday -- Denn will bring four U.S. Army veterans to William Penn High School to talk with the Air Force JROTC about their service to the country.
Wednesday -- Denn will join the Delaware Mentoring Council during their "Forum on Mentoring in Juvenile Justice Settings" at Delaware State University.
Thursday -- First Lady Carla Markell will read to preschoolers at the Latin American Community Center in Wilmington.
Friday -- The Markells will attend a Blood Bank of Delmarva Community Blood Drive on the Delaware Department of Health and Human Services' Herman Holloway Campus in New Castle.
The Markells also are requesting donations for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Delaware's "Project Renewal," which aims to mobilize volunteers, community leaders and resources across the state to renew and upgrade the clubs' facilities. Donations can be made online at www.bgclubs.org/projectrenewal.