Environment | Forestry | Ecotrope

Portland Turns Arbor Day Into Arbor Month

Ecotrope | March 27, 2013 10:48 a.m. | Updated: March 27, 2013 1:17 p.m. | Portland

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The city of Portland is extending its Arbor Day tree celebration to make it last an entire month. Is anyone surprised?

Arbor Day is typically one day of planting and caring for trees. Portland has made it a weeklong celebration in the past, and will take it up yet another notch this year.

“Portland is so all about trees we need a whole month to talk about them,” said Bryan Burch, a volunteer who helped organize this year’s event. “Once we got going we just wanted to fill up an entire month.”

Portland’s Arbor Month will start on Monday, April 1, with bucket trucks offering a fee “squrrel’s eye view” of the urban forest. The events will continue with urban tree history lessons, work parties, planting events, a city council vote designating new heritage trees, guided tree walks, bike tours, a tree-mapping class and tree identification training.

There’s even a “TREEsure Hunt” for kids with rewards for finding and photographing one of the city’s 300 heritage trees.

The culminating event is a festival at the Portland State University farmers market on April 20. Burch said he’s hoping that merging the festival with a weekend attraction like the farmers market will allow the Arbor Day message to reach more people.

“At past events I’ve gotten the feeling we were preaching to the very essential choir,”said Burch. “At the farmers market by April 20, there could be 12,000 people there that day. So, that was kind of a no-brainer.”

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