DIS students learn the importance of trees

The winners of Dover Intermediate School’s Arbor Day poster contest join Mayor Dennis Clough in pouring the first shovels of dirt on a newly planted tree outside the school. Photo by Tara Wendell

On Friday, April 28, Arbor Day, Westlake's fifth-grade students at Dover Intermediate School participated in a tree planting and award ceremony that was held at their school.

Led by Mayor Dennis Clough, Service Director Paul Quinn III, Urban Forestry Manager Stan Barnard, Tree Commission Chairperson Mary Beth Schneidler, and DIS Principal Alex Fleming, the students were invited to create posters depicting "Why trees are important to me!" Their posters were judged by Tree Commission members John Walz, Margie Rossander, Diane Morris, Justin Parks, Mary Beth Schneidler and Stan Barnard.

Over 70 posters were submitted with six winners being selected. The top posters were submitted by: Marisa Cutter, Aubrie Graber, Anastasia Boursinos, Alex Spring, Olivia Gentry and Ella Navratil. At the tree planting, each of the winners received a proclamation from the mayor along with a ribbon recognizing their achievement. All of the posters will be on display for one week at the Westlake Recreation Center beginning May 1.

Following the awards, each of the students who submitted a poster were invited to help plant a sunset maple tree in front of their school. Mr. Barnard and the Service Department helped prepare the site and explained to the students the proper way to plant a tree. All of the students who participated in the contest also received a white pine seedling tree to plant at their homes.

On the first Arbor Day in 1872, one million trees were planted. It was named Arbor Day since "Arbor" means "tree" in Latin. In 1970, President Nixon declared it a national holiday and declared that Arbor Day would be celebrated on the last Friday in April. That holiday continues today throughout the United States with only two states celebrating on a different day because of their growing season ... Alaska celebrating in May and Hawaii in November!

Westlake has been a designated Tree City USA for 26 years and has worked very hard to plant and care for the trees in Westlake. Much is also done to educate residents about trees. This tree planting is just one of the many things happening throughout the city to beautify our city and preserve our trees!

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Volume 9, Issue 9, Posted 10:20 AM, 05.02.2017