Arbor Day celebrations are being planned across the state throughout April and May.
One city in our area is being recognized as Tree City USA community.
By the calendar, Friday April 24 is National Arbor Day. 15 communities will receive Tree City USA awards this year. Elkins is one of them.
“We want to instill in people the importance of having trees in a urban environment. For every dollar that a city spends in tree care, they get three back,” said Katy Trupo, West Virginia Division of Forestry.
Tree City USA is a national program that provides the framework for community forestry management for cities and towns across America. Jennings Randolph Elementary was chosen as a site for planting this ornamental cherry tree.
“We selected a location that community members would enjoy, and the students enjoy. So being in front of the building where people can walk their pets and people take walks it would be the best place for the tree to be seen,” said Rochelle Chenoweth, principal at Jennings Randolph Elementary School.
Whether you plant a tree on Arbor Day or another day. The important part is that you plant a tree.
“It just helps with a lot problems urban areas are facing. With climate change with all the big environmental issues that are going on, planting trees makes a huge difference,” Trupo said.
Students at the school felt they learned the commitment to care for and manage trees after being selected a Tree City USA community.
“I’m excited to the have trees around anyways. They give students stuff like oxygen. They’re really pretty in the Spring when they bloom,” said Jade Neubauer, student.
“It gives walkers and riders, and they get to enjoy seeing the tree bloom and grow throughout the years,” said Albert Chewning, student.
Principal Rochelle Chenoweth said students can learn many aspects of helping in the community.
“It helps them realize it can help their community. It was discussed with them the benefits of planting trees as far as recreation, economics, helping the environment. So they also learned about the value and participated in the value,” Chenoweth said.
There are more than 3,400 communities that are currently a Tree City USA.There are more than 500 communities that received a Growth Award. Over 135 million people live in a Tree City USA.