American Transmission Co.

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Media Line: (877) 506-6117info(at)atcllc.com

Mount Calvary, Wis. woman wins $5,000 in landscaping from ATC’s Grow Smart® Sweepstakes

Media note: Members of the media are invited to the final phase of the landscaping work on Sept. 15 from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Maggie and Steve McCullough, as well as nationally known horticulturist and gardening expert Melinda Myers, will be available for interviews. Please contact Jackie Olson at 877-506-6117 for additional details and the address.

PEWAUKEE, WIS. — When Maggie McCullough of Mount Calvary, Wis., first learned about the possibility of winning $5,000 worth of landscaping through American Transmission Co.’s Grow Smart® Sweepstakes, she didn’t think about winning; she entered to get a free garden kneeling pad that was offered for each household’s entry. “I never thought we’d actually win,” she said. But McCullough was the lucky winner, and now an entire new area of landscaping is being installed at the Mount Calvary home she shares with her husband, Steve.

ATC held the Grow Smart Sweepstakes as a way to continue educating the public about its Grow Smart program. The program helps property owners and communities identify low-growing, beautiful vegetation that can be planted the smart way – a safe distance from transmission line rights-of-way.

The sweepstakes targeted property owners who have an ATC easement, and who also had vegetation management work performed by ATC on their property in 2015. Eligible households were notified through a postcard mailing earlier this year that they could enter to win $5,000 in landscaping for their property, as well as a two-hour personal consultation with horticulturist and gardening expert Melinda Myers to discuss ideas and visions for what could be done with the landscape (including compatible, low-growing species and other Grow Smart options).The winner was drawn at random from more than 65 entries.

“We are delighted that Maggie and Steve are the winners,” said Anne Spaltholz, ATC’s director of Corporate Communications. “We have learned that they both love gardening and landscaping, and have worked for years to make their property beautiful and natural, reflecting the nature that’s around them.”

This summer, the McCulloughs met with Myers and representatives from Stuart’s Landscaping and Garden Center of Fond du Lac to discuss best practices and Grow Smart compatible plantings for their yard. The McCulloughs chose to landscape an area close to their house that is common to many homes: a steep incline with an exposed, walkout basement. But they also wanted to make sure the landscaping was complementary to other areas on their property.

Maggie McCullough explains, “We have 38 acres of land with a river, wetlands, a hill and woods. Around the house we’ve done a lot of naturalizing with perennials. We’ve tried to create a really good environment for the wildlife around here. In addition to the more formal perennial beds that are around the house, we also have two prairies on our land; one of which is actually underneath the power lines. It’s in keeping with ATC’s philosophy of using the low-growing perennial plants and flowers. They’ll never get tall enough to create any problems with the power lines.”

Stuart’s Landscaping developed a landscape plan for the McCulloughs that features terracing and native vegetation similar to that in the established prairie on their property. The landscaping work will take place (weather permitting) at the McCullough’s home on Sept. 14 and 15, 2016.

“The McCulloughs are really modeling what Grow Smart is all about,” added Myers. “Investing time up front to create an appropriate and beautiful landscape pays off with years of beauty and less ongoing maintenance. On behalf of the Grow Smart program, we congratulate them.”

To learn more about ATC’s Grow Smart program, go to: www.atc-GrowSmart.com.

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American Transmission Co. is a Wisconsin-based company that owns and operates the electric transmission system in portions of the Upper Midwest. Formed in 2001 as the nation’s first multi-state transmission-only utility, ATC has invested $3.8 billion to improve the adequacy and reliability of its infrastructure. ATC now has $4 billion in assets, including more than 9,540 miles of transmission lines and 545 substations. The company is a member of the MISO regional transmission organization, and provides nondiscriminatory service to all customers, supporting effective competition in energy markets without favoring any market participant. For more information, visit our website at www.atcllc.com.

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