Duke Energy’s nuclear station education centers and outreach programs continue to serve as a critical connection between the power plants and surrounding communities. Locals play a large role in the vitality of our business of providing safe, reliable energy to our customers, whether it’s supporting local health and human service agencies, working with our teams on emergency preparedness or the thousands of employees who live in our communities and work hard and safely every day. It is our job as good corporate citizens to engage with our communities in activities and opportunities that let them know we’re proud to be their nuclear neighbors.
As the summer winds down, we’d like to share the community events of the past season – and those coming up to round out the summer. We encourage you to visit our education centers year-round, and we hope you will attend one of the many annual events next summer!
Crystal River: In June, workers at the Crystal River Nuclear Plant in Florida showed their colors and their concern for the local community. As part of the plant’s Jersey Day event, workers sported their favorite team’s jersey and collected non-perishable food to benefit a local food bank, donating 75 pounds of food. Workers at the on-site café also wanted to participate, so they hosted a pet food drive, collecting 116 pounds of cat food and 171 pounds of dog food. Also in June, the United Way of Citrus County presented Duke Energy a Leadership Giving Award at an awards luncheon. In July, more than 300 people attended a Duke Energy open house in Florida. The proposed new natural gas plant in Citrus County was the main attraction, but workers from the Crystal River Nuclear Plant were also on hand to answer questions about the plant’s decommissioning plan. More information about the nuclear plant is available at duke-energy.com/CR3. Also in July, employees at the Crystal River Nuclear Plant volunteered their time and talent to serve as camera operators at a telethon benefiting the Key Training Center, a local nonprofit agency that helps adults with developmental disabilities. Nuclear plant workers have participated in this event for 25 years.
North Carolina Nuclear
McGuire: At McGuire Nuclear Station, one of the season’s biggest highlights year after year is the Charlotte Symphony concert. In June, nearly 10,000 locals gathered on the lawn of the station’s education center, the EnergyExplorium (Huntersville, N.C.), to listen to the concert. They also came by boat and enjoyed the sights and sounds on beautiful Lake Norman. Guests are always encouraged to bring picnic dinners to top off the evening of socializing and fantastic music.
McGuire’s EnergyExplorium also hosted two summer movie nights in July and August. 2,500 visitors spread blankets and chairs across the lawn to watch “Rio 2” and “Mr. Peabody and Sherman.”
Harris: Harris Nuclear Plant’s big summer event is coming up Sept. 6 – members of the surrounding communities are invited to come out to the ninth-annual Harris Community Day at the Energy and Environmental (E&E) Center in New Hill, N.C. There are plenty of fun-filled activities scheduled throughout the day, including learning about the benefits of nuclear power, bucket truck rides, simulator tours and more. Harris Nuclear Plant also recently held its annual Key Leader Breakfast, in which 45 elected officials and community leaders visited the E&E Center for breakfast and received a plant update from Site Vice President Ben Waldrep. To support the community, 120 Harris employees, families and friends participated in a North American Young Generation in Nuclear (NAYGN) golf tournament that earned more than $10,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Eastern Carolina. Employees also collected 350 book bags filled with school supplies for five area elementary schools. Additionally, teachers received $500 worth of cleaning supplies and teaching materials.
Brunswick: Brunswick Nuclear Plant employees participated in a Southport Waterfront Litter Sweep in July, in which they collected trash and cleaned up debris along Southport’s waterfront. Duke Energy employees actively participate in environmentally sustainable community service projects such as litter sweeps along shorelines, roadways and more. Employees will also participate in a Schoolyard Habitat Build Day on Fri., Aug. 22.
South Carolina Nuclear
Robinson: Throughout the summer, Robinson Nuclear Plant engineers visited the S.C. Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics in Hartsville, S.C. These engineers met with students attending summer camps at the school and spoke to them about nuclear energy and careers in the nuclear industry. Robinson employees also donated nearly 400 back packs filled with school supplies to 12 area elementary schools in Chesterfield, Darlington and Lee counties.
Catawba: Catawba Nuclear Station employees collected roughly 200 back packs this summer that were donated to area schools. In addition, the plant will host its United Way Kick-Off on Sept. 25, in which its car and bike show, karaoke and more will raise money for the local United Way organizations in York County and nearby locations.
Oconee: Oconee Nuclear Station’s World of Energy (education center) kicked off the summer with its first-ever “Wednesdays at the World of Energy.” This free, hour-long program every Wednesday in June and July featured fun activities for children under 12 years of age. Between 150 and 200 families participated in Mini-Science Camp Day and Critter Keeper Day. Other activities included Boating and Water Safety, a Fourth of July Talent Show and Picnic, Movie Day, Storytelling Day, Sing-A-Long Bird Songs and Crafts and more. The World of Energy also hosted its annual summer movie nights on Lake Keowee in June and August. More than 800 people gathered on Lake Keowee to watch “Frozen” and “The LEGO Movie.” Oconee also held a Realtors’ Breakfast and Community Leaders Breakfast, in which local realtors and key community leaders received an update from Site Vice President Scott Batson and toured the station.
The summer will go out with a bang on Sept. 20, when the World of Energy hosts its annual Hunting and Fishing Day, which attracts thousands of visitors to this free family outdoor adventure. From 9 a.m. until 3 p.m., guests enjoy kayaking and fishing on Lake Keowee, archery, air rifle shooting, fly tying and casting, wildlife artifacts, camouflage hide-and-seek and more.