National Cemetery Christmas Wreaths to Become Bass Habitat

by Katie Maloney
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What happens to all the old wreaths from the National Cemetery after Christmas? Thanks to BASS Nation, the wreaths now become new fish homes.

Members of the West Virginia BASS Nation and other organizations gathered to remove wreaths from graves at the National Cemetery. In an effort to recycle the wreaths, the group is repurposing them in Tygart Lake.

Conservation Director of WV BASS Nation, Jerod Harman, said that the group started the recycling effort one year ago.

“The wreaths got thrown away after they were taken off the graves,” said Harman to West Virginia Metro News’s Chris Lawrence. “Rather than having to pay to have them thrown away. We thought why not see if we could make them into some fish habitat. And it’s evolved from there,” he said.

In a Facebook post, West Virginia BASS Nation shared photos and thanked everyone who contributed to the project. The group wrote, “Thank you to our Conservation Director Jerod Harman. And to all others who assisted in this awesome & worthwhile project! BNWV Conservation….improving conditions for ALL anglers!”

Photo taken from Jarod Harman’s post on West Virginia BASS Nation Facebook page.

Participants Design Wreath-Cube For New Bass Habitat

Harman said that last year, the team attached the wreaths to PVC pipes. They anchored the pipes to cinder blocks and placed them along the bottom of the lake. However, the design was a little complicated.

“If the lakebed isn’t frozen it gets really mucky. Last year, we had a heck of a time walking around out there and trying to place things. We thought if we could find a way to place those with a piece of equipment, rather than walking around. It would be a lot easier,” said Harman.

And that’s exactly what they did. The team regrouped and replanned this year. The new design features a PVC pipe frame attached to a palette. This design allows participants to place the wreaths in pillars across the palette – forming a cube-like shape. The group then transports the wreath-cube to the lake and drops it in using a machine. The design allows the entire project to be assembled at the cemetery. Harman said that the best part of the new design is that it allows for the project to expand.

“It’s going to continue to get bigger. We’re going to do more expanding, but it takes more people and it takes money,” said Harman.

Outsider.com