Anyone who lives, works, or plays in the District knows it’s an unusual and unique place. Not quite a state, not quite just a city, there are some colorful challenges to working within our fair diamond. Something we encounter frequently, as a group that likes to put things in the ground, is the overwhelming number of landowners in the city. A variety of public entities, private land held by homeowners, businesses and houses of worship, and don’t forget the behemoth amount of land owned and managed by different federal government agencies.
Over the past decade of tree planting, we’ve focused on schools, community associations, apartment buildings and HOAs, small community parks, and other community spaces where people have said needed canopy. But, as we went over in our 2017 Tree Report Card (where D.C. scored our highest ever grade!) the future of tree planting lies in planting on those larger parcels of city-owned land – and there is one untapped resource in public lands we’ve barely started to re-tree: parks and recreation centers.
Enter the Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR). Old friends of ours from the TreeWise summer youth program and GZEP high school employment program, we are thrilled to announce a giant and critical step forward for our partnership – Community Tree Plantings and Park Inventories at DPR Parks and Recreation facilities! As 2018 Canopy Award winners for Partnership, we’re excited to add to our already impressive list of accomplishments with DPR. This partnership allows us to fulfill our mission of re-treeing D.C. and nicely compliments their goal of providing quality urban recreation and leisure services for residents and visitors to the District of Columbia. Plus, you get to directly contribute to canopy where you really want it – your neighborhood park and recreation center! After all, who likes to sit the middle of a grass field baking away in the 100 degree temps in August? No thank you.
This season we’ll be at the following DPR locations – and we could always use your help! While this partnership is a win-win-win for us, DPR, and the city, more land to plant on means more trees need to be planted which means we need more volunteers!
Perhaps you missed out on one of our earlier events with DPR like our Tree Care Relay Races at Takoma Rec, Community Tree Planting at Upshur Rec, or Park Inventory at LeDroit Park? Stay tuned for when we announce spring season dates. There’s always an opportunity to lend a hand to our city and park’s trees!