Lakewood celebrates Arbor Day as a Tree City USA community

Published on May 06, 2024

Arbor Day Group Photo

May 6, 2024 – Fourth grade students in Lakewood put a personal touch on Lasley Park when they planted new trees as part of Arbor Day celebrations in Lakewood.

In addition to the Lasley plantings, Lakewood has received the Arbor Day Foundation’s Tree City USA Growth Award. In recognition of these accomplishments, Mayor Wendi Strom joined the students and staff members to speak about the importance of a diverse urban tree canopy in Lakewood.

Carrie Tomlinson, with the Colorado State Forest Service, and Luke Killoran, Lakewood forestry supervisor, were joined by U.S. Forest Service mascots Smokey Bear and Woodsy Owl to educate the students on the value of tending to trees, the importance of a diverse tree canopy and the value that a thriving urban forest provides to their community.

Students from Lasley Elementary’s  fourth grade class planted deciduous trees, taking their learning from the classroom into their community.

“It was incredibly fun celebrating Arbor Day with over 80 enthusiastic Lasley Elementary fourth grade students, and I'm excited to watch these trees grow and flourish, enriching our community for years to come,” Killoran said.

Participants were split into groups to plant trees throughout the park bordering the school. City of Lakewood staff members guided each group through best practices, safety precautions and setting up their saplings for success. Each group used shovels to plant the root ball, mulched around the radius of the tree and named each tree. Park employees staked the trees in place to anchor and protect their growth while Smokey Bear and Woodsy Owl celebrated the accomplishments by dancing and exchanging high-fives with students.

The Tree City USA Growth Award is presented by the Arbor Day Foundation to participating Tree City USA communities that demonstrate higher levels of tree care and community engagement during the calendar year. This is the 42nd year that Lakewood has been named as a Tree City USA award winner. According to the Arbor Day Foundation, more than 3,400 communities have made the commitment to becoming a Tree City USA.

For more information on Lakewood’s Forestry Division, visit Lakewood.org/Forestry.

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