Craig Parks and Rec brings arboreal ardor to elementary schools with tree-planting project | CraigDailyPress.com

Craig Parks and Rec brings arboreal ardor to elementary schools with tree-planting project

Sunset Elementary School fifth-graders gather around a new maple tree on the school's front lawn Friday as part of an Arbor Day planting project through Craig Parks and Recreation.
Andy Bockelman

Big things start small, but with enough tender loving care, they’ll grow to be truly impressive, a lesson Craig Parks and Recreation hopes to impart to local kids.

Parks and Rec continued its Adopt-a-Park program for the second year with Craig’s elementary schools as fifth-graders aided in the planting of trees Friday, May 3 as a belated celebration of Arbor Day, which took place April 26.

The students of Sandrock Elementary School placed a pear tree at North Park, while the kids of Ridgeview Elementary planted a blue spruce at Woodbury.

Originally, organizers had planned for Sunset students to plant a tree in Breeze Park, though due to maintenance at the site, students instead placed a tatarian maple on the front lawn of the school.

Parks and Rec’s Ryan Dennison noted the plant life was provided by local nurseries Tunies & Such and Bears Ears Landscapes.

“It’s been an awesome day with the turnout and weather-wise,” he said. “It’s great to connect with the kids and help them take pride in their parks.”

Students also performed a litter clean-up after the new trees were settled.

Sunset teacher Betsy Smith said besides learning about the holiday that encourages nurturing greenery, the project also gives her students an appreciation for leafy life.

“It helps them recognize different kinds of trees, how to plant them correctly and why it’s important to have them in parks and cities,” she said.