2020 March North Arkansas Electric "The Messenger" Newsletter

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MARCH 2020

THE MESSENGER A Publication for North Arkansas Electric Cooperative Members

Office in Ash Flat closing hour earlier Beginning March 2, the NAEC office in Ash Flat will close at 3:30 p.m. each weekday. The office’s member service representatives still will answer phone calls until 4:30 p.m. Members may make payments through the drop box found to the left of the front door at any time. The office is located at 824 Arkansas Highway 56. Members may reach NAEC by calling 870-994-2191 or emailing info@naeci.com.

Youth Tour applications due March 13 NAEC is accepting applications from high school juniors for the 2020 Youth Tour to Washington, D.C. Up to five teenagers will be chosen for the all-expense-paid trip June 19-25 that includes major sites around the nation’s capital. The application is available at www.naeci.com/ youth-tour and through school counselors. NAEC must receive completed applications by March 13. Please call 870-895-6210 with any questions.

Cordless electric leaf blowers are lightweight and easy to maneuver.

Consider ways to electrify lawn care Spring is just around the corner, and you can practically smell the freshly cut grass. If you’re in the market to upgrade your lawn care equipment, you may want to consider electric (or battery-powered) options. Gas-powered lawn mowers and trimmers may be your go-to, but times they are a changin’. Electric lawn care equipment options are becoming more popular than ever. They offer consumers faster charging times, longer battery life and quieter, greener products compared to their gas-powered counterparts. Here are three ways you can electrify your lawn care this spring.

Electric Lawn Mowers

Electric lawn mowers have come a long way over the past few years. Early models required corded connections, which were tricky to manage — but the cord has been cut. Newer cordless electric mowers are certainly more expensive than gas-powered mowers, but much of the upfront cost can be recovered since electricity is a less expensive fuel than gas. In addition, electric engines generally require less maintenance than gas engines. Cordless electric mowers typically range from $200 to $500. Electric mowers are suitable for most lawn care needs, with batteries that typically require about one to two hours to fully charge. Most batteries can run for a full hour. That said, if you have a large yard (half an acre or larger), a gas-powered option may be best to suit your needs. See LAWN CARE on back.

ENERGY EFFICIENCY TIP OF THE MONTH Placing hot food in the refrigerator makes the appliance work harder than necessary and use more energy. Allow food to cool before you place it in the fridge. — energy.gov


Electric Trimmers

Cordless electric string trimmers are a great option for most lawns. Traditionally, like lawn mowers, string trimmers have been powered by gas. However, new versions of electric trimmers are improving and now are considered worthy competitors of gas-powered models. Cordless electric trimmers are much quieter and easier to use, but most batteries last about 30 to 45 minutes. If you have a lot of space to trim, then you may want to consider a back-up battery or plan to work in short bursts. If you’re interested in purchasing an electric trimmer, the main factors to consider are the battery’s life, charge time and power. Costs vary depending on your needs, but you can find a quality version for about $100.

Electric Leaf Blowers

After cutting and trimming your lawn, you’ll need to clear off those walkways and patios for the finishing touch. If you don’t want to deal with the maintenance of a gas-powered blower or the restraints of a corded blower, a cordless electric version is a great option. Cordless electric leaf blowers are lightweight and easy to maneuver, but they don’t offer quite as much power as gas-powered and corded blowers. If your leaf blowing and clearing needs are minimal, a cordless electric leaf blower can get the job done. Costs for a cordless electric blower vary depending on power and battery quality, but you can purchase a dependable model starting at $150. If you’re looking to electrify your lawn care equipment, be sure to do your homework. Search online for the latest reviews, and check trusted websites like ConsumerReports.org. With a little research, you’ll be well on your way to Lawn of the Month — with less maintenance, hassle and noise. —Abby Berry/NRECA

High school seniors can apply for scholarship The member-funded Operation Round Up® program awards thousands of dollars in scholarships to local graduating high school seniors each year. The co-op is accepting applications for the 2020-2021 scholarship program. The application may be downloaded at www.naeci.com/operation -round-up-scholarship. It also was sent to school counselors. Applicants must mail or deliver the typed application to NAEC by April 13. They must include a high school transcript and three letters of recommendation. To be eligible for the scholarship program, high school seniors must graduate at the end of the 2020 school year, and their parents or guardians must be NAEC members. Applicants also must have a high school grade point average of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale through the first semester of their senior year. The scholarship must be used to attend an accredited institute of higher learning on a full-time basis.

Joining Operation Round Up

You can help support future scholarship recipients by joining Operation Round Up. Members volunteer to have their monthly electric bill “rounded up” to the nearest dollar. Donations are placed in a trust and administered by an independent board made up of community leaders. The board evaluates all requests and determines how Operation Round Up monies are distributed. Funds have been awarded as college scholarships, grants to community organizations and disaster assistance. To enroll in Operation Round Up, call 870-895-3221 or visit an NAEC office.

DAILY HIGHS & LOWS — JANUARY 2020 Average Daily High: 48.9° compared to 45.74° in 2019


Average Daily Low: 30.84° compared to 27° in 2019 Total Rainfall Amount: 4.24” compared to 3.63” in 2019 Warmest Day: Jan. 15, 64° at 3:30 p.m. Coolest Day: Jan. 20, 16.4° at 7 a.m.

DAYS CONTACT NAEC 870-895-3221 info@naeci.com naeci.com

RIGHT-OF-WAY Ash Flat, Kingsmill, Sitka, Center and Poughkeepsie areas in Sharp County


ON THE FRONT Magician Scott Davis reacts to a Cherokee Elementary student “breaking” his wand during his safety show.