The Town of Smithtown celebrated Arbor Day together with Kings Park School District’s Park View Elementary Students. On Friday, April 29th, elected officials, together with the Department of Environment and Waterways and the Parks Department, hosted a ceremonial tree planting at Cy Donnelly Park to mark the 150th Anniversary of Arbor Day. Students at Park View Elementary School were eager to assist the Town in planting a Saw Tooth Oak Tree, which over time will shade the playground at Cy Donnelly Park.
“What a great way to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of Arbor Day. David Barnes and his team did an outstanding job, teaching some very enthusiastic young residents all about the holiday, and Smithtown’s reputation as Tree City, USA. I’d like to thank Dr. Timothy Eagen, Park View Principal Kevin Storch, and the incredible teachers who worked together with us to make this such a great occasion for the students. And of course, I’d like to recognize the work of our Parks Department, which goes above and beyond for the people in our community every day. This was a wonderful event, where the school and local government worked in tandem to provide a quality education experience for our local youth.” – Supervisor Ed Wehrheim
Environmental Director David Barnes quizzed students on the importance of trees, asking to list a number of vital functions they provide. Many elementary students yelled out answers such as trees creating oxygen, and that they are used to create paper. However, the classes were very excited to learn that trees make medicines such as aspirin, improve air quality, and support wildlife. Additionally, Park View students learned about Smithtown celebrating 36 years running as Tree City, USA.
The ceremony ended with the elementary students helping to plant the Saw Tooth Oak Tree. Teachers were presented with educational activity and coloring pages at the end of the event, to take back to the classroom for future use.
DID YOU KNOW?
- Trees are the fundamental basis of sustaining life on earth. Trees create oxygen through Photosynthesis, absorbing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
- The Amazon Rainforest is often called the 'Lung of Earth' as it is the largest producer of oxygen.
- The Town of Smithtown has an estimated 50,000 street trees which the Town cares for. If a tree falls down or is removed, another is planted the following Fall.
- As part of the Town of Smithtown’s commitment to the environment, the Department of Environment and Waterways has begun an invasive species and tree census database to further protect the Trees throughout the township.