NEWKIRK, Oklahoma - Newkirk’s City Manager says Tuesday night’s tornado damaged trees in more than half of the town. 

Thursday morning, 200 Newkirk High School students met in the school gym, then fanned out across town, loading up debris.

Newkirk Principal Kevin Engle says students and district personnel hauled 300 truckloads to a DEQ approved dump site. 

“This is the first time that’s been done. The opportunity doesn’t always knock, and hopefully we don’t want another tornado, but this was an opportunity for our kids to give back to our community,” said Engle.

Students Austin Perry and Garrett Stone tell News 9 the hard work was still better than going to school.