Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Hundreds of UIS students to plant over 3,000 tree saplings at two Springfield parks on Arbor Day

WHAT: Over 400 students from the University of Illinois Springfield are expected to help plant 3,500 tree saplings at Carpenter and Gurgens Park in Springfield on Arbor Day. The effort is being coordinated by the UIS Volunteer & Civic Engagement Center.

WHEN: Friday, April 27 from 2:30 to 6 p.m.

WHERE: Take Peoria Road north to The Rail Golf Course in Sherman and turn left. Park in the Rail Golf Course parking lot.

DETAILS: The tree planting will provide a valuable service to the Springfield Park District, while teaching students about the importance of sustainability and physically engaging them in environmental responsibility. Gurgens and Carpenter parks are both forest preserves, but large areas throughout the parks lack trees. This planting will help to reclaim approximately 100 acres of open land with native oak species.

The tree saplings for the project were donated by the East Moline based non-profit group Living Lands & Waters as part of their MillionTrees Project. The initiative began in 2007 as a way to aid in the protection, preservation, and restoration of the natural environment. Saplings for the project are grown at a nursery in Beardstown, Ill.

The UIS Volunteer & Civic Engagement Center is receiving additional support from Bunn-O-Matic Corporation in Springfield that will help purchase biodegradable tree guards to protect the saplings from wildlife, and The Rail Golf Course, which is providing parking.

The effort is part of UIS’ annual Springfest Celebration, a week-long event where students compete in a variety of fun and educational events.

For more information on the project, contact Mark Dochterman, director of the UIS Volunteer & Civic Engagement Center at mdoch2@uis.edu.

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