Beach celebrates third Arbor DayLincoln Elementary students along with others from the community celebrated the city’s third annual Arbor Day celebration Friday afternoon and learned about the importance of trees.
BEACH — Lincoln Elementary students along with others from the community celebrated the city’s third annual Arbor Day celebration Friday afternoon and learned about the importance of trees.
Students brought home their own honeysuckle trees to plant in their backyards, as well.
“They can plant these trees every year in their backyard and it’s a way of also bringing the parents in on it so it’s not just the kids,” said Cheryl Planert, Beach Tree Board president.
Before the ceremony Friday afternoon, a row of trees was planted on the east side of the school, where students gathered to sing about trees.
Beach is also one of 49 North Dakota cities named Tree City USA, said Tom Claeys, forestry and fire management team leader for the state forest service.
Beach residents began taking action to plant more trees about three years ago, Planert said.
“We needed a community tree ordinance and what we had on our books in Beach was very, very old and no longer applied, so we completely rewrote the tree ordinance,” Planert said.
The city then began removing dead and dying trees, most of which were victims of Dutch Elm disease, she added. The tree removal is nearly done.
Joel Nichols, community forestry specialist, instructed those who attended the celebration to plant a variety of trees to avoid history repeating itself.
“We didn’t have much variety, so all of the American Elm trees got infected and most of them didn’t make it,” Nichols said. “By having variety, if we have another insect or disease that comes along, we’re not going to lose everything at once.”
He also instructed those who attended how to properly plant trees.
Rep. Dave Drovdal, R-Watford City attended the event as well.
“Beach stays involved,” Drovdal said. “They don’t do it for the reward, they do it for the reason, and that’s because trees are important.”
In preparation for the Arbor Day celebration, students were involved in projects earlier in the week.
“The art teacher had all of the grade school kids create a flyer with something to do with trees and why they were valuable,” Planert said. “All of those posters are up for people to see.”
She said more people get involved in the celebration every year.
“My vision is that this gets really big,” Planert said.
The state Arbor Day ceremony will be held in Dickinson July 8.
“We move the state Arbor Day celebration around the state of North Dakota, basically to tie into local ceremony,” Claeys said.
Because Dickinson has had to replace so many trees after a tornado last summer, the Arbor Day Foundation decided to hold it in Dickinson this year, he added.