Celebrate Arbor Day
April 26, 2019 5 p.m.
129 W. National Street
There is nothing more inspiring than a community coming together for a greater cause. The community of West Chicago has devotedly worked on replacing and improving trees in Reed-Keppler Park after a devastating storm in 2012 wiped out close to 200 trees. Since then, a variety of programs have promoted tree plantings in the community.
The West Chicago Garden Club was founded in 1925, an active club that laid dormant for a while, they started blooming again in 1998. Currently, they have about 60 volunteer members ranging from 11 to 94 years of age and from novice to master gardeners. Typically, April is a busy month for the members as they prepare for their only fundraiser which is the plant sale in West Chicago’s Blooming fest. The plant sale has been in effect since 1999 and it is very unique due to the fact that members don’t buy plants for the sale, instead, they take plants form their own gardens and pot them for the sale so that buyers will have a seasoned plant and experience a quicker bloom.
This year, Billie Childress, a member of Garden Club since 2000 took on a project to extend their love for plants and plan a tree planting in celebration of Arbor Day. Billie worked with Michael Gasparini, Superintendent of Parks to the West Chicago Park District to find the ideal trees for this event. The West Chicago Park District recently coordinated a tree inventory project of Reed-Keppler Park, the jewel of the community. Following some research, Childress and Gasparini agreed on the planting of three hickory pecan trees (Carya Ilinoinensis), there is currently one of its kind at the park out of over one thousand trees in managed areas. The trees will feature a bracelet that marks their donation by the Garden Club.
You and your family can help plant a better tomorrow, celebrate Arbor Day by taking part in the planting of the trees on Friday, April 26 at 5:00pm in Reed-Keppler Park located at 129 W. National Street in West Chicago. Members of the community can also take part in honoring a loved one with the memorial tree program that is offered by the West Chicago Park District. Everyone is invited to attend Blooming Fest, the downtown garden Festival that will take place on Saturday, May 18 form 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Main Street in West Chicago.
These programs and events help the City of West Chicago achieve the America in Bloom program; whose vision is to have communities across the country as welcoming and vibrant places to live, work, and play – benefiting from colorful plants and trees; enjoying clean environments; celebrating heritage; and planting pride through volunteerism. This year, the City received the CN EcoConnexions From the Ground Up grant to use for its 2019 Parkway Tree Planting Program. The grant, administered by America in Bloom, will help the City plant 160+ trees throughout the community.
The mission of the Garden Club is to be a support to gardeners in the community by presenting monthly meetings with educational topics. Garden Club meets the 4th Thursday of every month in the evening at the St. Andrews Lutheran Church in West Chicago. For more information visit westchicagogardenclub.org.
Content is courtesy of the West Chicago Park District.