Tuesday, February 7, 2023
Feb. 7, 2023

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Shoveling a lot of snow for a little bit of dough

By , Columbian Education Reporter
Published:
3 Photos
Dhruv Desai, 13, from left, Randall Conner, 10, and Greg Conner, 13, shovel the snow off a neighbor's driveway near Southeast 19th Street and Southeast 173rd Avenue in Vancouver on Thursday.
Dhruv Desai, 13, from left, Randall Conner, 10, and Greg Conner, 13, shovel the snow off a neighbor's driveway near Southeast 19th Street and Southeast 173rd Avenue in Vancouver on Thursday. (Ariane Kunze/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

Brothers Greg and Randall Conner and their friend Dhruv Desai have this snow-shoveling thing down to a system.

Dhruv, 13, uses the one snow shovel among the three to get the bulk of the snow off a driveway the team was shoveling on 19th Street near Fisher’s Landing on Thursday. Greg and Randall, 13 and 10 respectively, provide backup with garden shovels, meticulously scraping the smaller bits of snow left behind.

Snow day doldrums bred entrepreneurial spirit for the three boys, who have had most of the week off due to school cancellations at Evergreen Public Schools and other districts.

“We wanted some money,” Greg said as he shoveled snow and scraped ice. Greg, an active kid, wore a cast on his left arm from recently breaking his elbow in a skateboarding accident.

The three have been charging neighbors $5 apiece — and doing the occasional free shoveling for someone in need, as was the case on Southeast 19th Street. The homeowner, they said, is an elderly women who can’t get outside to shovel her driveway. She wasn’t home when the boys knocked, but they got to work anyway.

The pair cleaned five driveways in the course of two days, with plans to hit more over the next few hours.

Greg and Randall’s mom, Terry Whipps Conner, watched with pride as the boys worked.

“I am so proud,” Whipps Conner said. “They could be inside watching movies or playing Xbox or fighting with each other. It’s total mama bliss.”

Becky Collier’s driveway was clear thanks to the boys’ earlier efforts, leaving her to stay warm and dry inside her home.

“I think it’s great,” she said. “It’s a good way to get them out of the house. They get their exercise, and they’re not playing video games.”

The boys admit they’re motivated by the thought of buying some football cards, though in the work found another, unexpected benefit.

“It does make people happy,” Randall said. “You kind of made someone’s day just by shoveling a driveway.”

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Columbian Education Reporter