On the Grounds

News | July 22, 2021

If you look out a St. Paul window, you’re bound to see Harris Schneekloth, clad in his bucket hat, shorts, and a St. Paul shirt. Harris is the Campus and Grounds Supervisor at St. Paul, meaning he is responsible for keeping the grounds looking their best. He, along with Matt Spencer and volunteers, ensures St. Paul is in top shape.

His outdoor responsibilities include trimming, keeping the parking lot clean, weeding, caring for the Memorial Garden, raking, mulching, watering, and mowing. It takes a dedicated team of volunteers to keep the campus clean and tidy. Jules Irish and her neighborhood cleanup crew pick up trash around the campus and the parking lots, Deanna and Leon Feuer- bach give special attention to keeping the flowers blooming, and Dale Goldensoph, along with his brother, Wayne, assist Harris with mowing and lawn maintenance.

Harris started with St. Paul in 1993, originally in a different role. He had owned a cleaning company and was contacted to clean the building. But they wanted to hire him as an employee and not a contracted service. Matt Spencer, Building Manager and the staff member with the longest tenure, said Harris started with St. Paul just a few years after Matt and made a big impact from day one.

“He’s always impressed me since the day he started. He works until the job is done. I could say all kinds of things about Harris. I don’t think he’s ever had a sick day. He will be in every single solitary hour and he’s been that way as long as I’ve known him.”

His fun, upbeat personality and witty sense of humor bring a smile to the staff and all St. Paul people.

“He’s the king of one-liners,” Matt said. “Nothing ever bothers Harris. Tomorrow is another day. He just lets things roll off and he’s very generous to everybody, very concerned about your wellbeing, and enthusiastic when good things happen. He’s just a good person.”

It’s that upbeat attitude that keeps Harris going even on the warmest of days.

“For someone his age, being outside three to four days a week in 100 degree weather,” Matt said. “I couldn’t do it.”

“Harris simply astounds me. How he can do all that he does, at almost 78-years-old, is something I haven’t figured out,” Pastor Marty said. “I’ve watched this guy’s work ethic and overall fitness and have admired him for 25 years. He gives and gives his all for two main reasons: he loves this
church and he loves the Lord.”

Harris has almost always run his own businesses and been his own boss. He said he likes the autonomy of taking care of the grounds at St. Paul.

“I like that I’m outside. This is a great congregation to work for,” Haris said. “The staff is excellent. Even though I’m outside I enjoy seeing the staff.”

The next time you visit St. Paul and find yourself admiring the beautiful landscaping, think of the hard work and dedication of Harris.

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