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CVTD, Aggie Shuttle Team Up for Better Air

Thursday, Feb. 07, 2013

photo illustration, USU Aggie Shuttle bus

Aggie Shuttle buses run on compressed natural gas. Statesman file photo. (from the Statesman Online)

The Student Life section of Utah State Today highlights work written by the talented student journalists at Utah State University. Each week, the editor selects a story that has been published in The Utah Statesman or the Hard News Café or both for inclusion in Utah State Today.

CVTD, Aggie Shuttle Team Up for Better Air

By Andy Pierucci, staff writer, in The Utah Statesman, Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Cache Valley Transit Department, Cache Chamber of Commerce and the Aggie Shuttle have teamed up again for the second annual Cache-In for Clean Air event, which will run through the month of February.

Much like last year’s event, when boarding any CVTD bus or Aggie Shuttle, riders can ask the driver for one ticket per ride from Feb. 1-28. Tickets can be filled out and deposited at one of 26 sponsors of Cache-in for Clean Air to be entered in a raffle for prizes of approximately $100 value each.

Alden Erickson, USU’s shuttle supervisor since 1994, said the same businesses who participated last year plus one more will be participating this year.

“The drawing will take place the first week of March,” Erickson said. “The winners will be contacted by phone or email.”

Erickson said he thinks Cache-In for Clean Air is a fun event.

“We got a lot of positive feedback from last year’s event and expect the same excitement and success from this year’s,” Erickson said. “We have already had bus drivers stop in and print more tickets.”

The prizes last year included a watch valued at $100 from S.E. Needham Jewelers; gift cards from Macey’s, Walmart and Lee’s; a book scholarship from the USU Campus Bookstore and much more.

A complete list of this year’s participating businesses and prizes can be found at

Randy Park, manager of marketing and planning for CVTD, said there is a threefold purpose for this event. The first is to increase awareness of the effects of pollution in the valley. The second is to promote local businesses in community. The third is to get people on the buses.

Kent Ricks, S.E. Needham Jeweler’s merchandising manager, agreed with Park.

“It’s important to our community,” Ricks said. “We have employees who ride the bus, as well as customers. We want to show our support to them and to our community by participating in Cache-In for Clean Air. Everyone knows about the inversion here. It’s no secret here in Cache Valley.”

Park said the businesses in the community are excited about Cache-In for Clean Air and are showing their support by donating great prizes.

“It brings the community together in a fun way,” Park said. “We are making a difference together.”

Erickson said USU has the largest alternative fuel system of all higher education institutions in the state.

“All of the buses in our fleet run on compressed natural gas,” he said. “If more people rode the bus, we could make a significant difference in the quality of air here in Cache Valley.”

Park and Erickson both said they think last year’s Cache-In for Clean Air was a success and are hopeful this year’s will be as well.

“We saw an increase in riders last year,” Park said. “On the back of the tickets are a few questions. One of the questions asks whether the person is a new rider to CVTD. We had 250 new riders on CVTD, and 159 on Aggie Shuttles during February 2012. 11,000 tickets were turned in and over 1,500 different people participated last year.”

2012 saw a record number of riders for both CVTD and Aggie Shuttles. Park and Erickson believe last year’s Cache-In for Clean Air contributed to the increase in riders.

“The more people who have an enjoyable experience on the bus, the more likely they are to recommend the bus to their friends and family,” said Park.

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