The Town of Friday Harbor sees the health of our trees as vital to our sense of well-being and as a defining characteristic of our community. Healthy trees provide us the daily benefit of cleaner air, shade and source of aesthetic beauty. The Tree City USA signs at the Town’s entrances tell visitors that this is a community that cares about its environment and symbolize increased quality of life.
Friday Harbor normally celebrates Arbor Day in the first week of April. While in years past this was a time for volunteer opportunities and community events for all ages, current CDC recommendations for COVID-19 make this year very different. All recreational programs in March and April were cancelled to help protect the Islands’ health. But that doesn’t mean we can’t celebrate!
The spirit of Arbor Day is strong, and below you will find ideas that will help us rally around our community trees this Spring. This public health crisis has taught us to be more agile and creative in finding ways to connect with ourselves, each other, and nature – so why not trees? After all, there are many benefits to being around trees, including less stress.
This year, the Town of Friday Harbor has proclaimed Arbor Week from May 11th through May 17th. There are many ways we can celebrate Arbor Week individually and together. Here are a few ideas:
- Plant a Tree. Celebrate Arbor Week in a personal way by planting a tree. It is an act of optimism and kindness, a labor of love and a commitment to stewardship.
- Hike Through a Forest. Enjoy the outdoors. Find a nearby trail in a forest (or park) and go for a walk, hike or bike ride.
- Online Nature Learning. Attend a class on tree or plant care.
- Read a Book. Learn to identify the trees and plants in your yard and neighborhood.
- Draw Your Favorite Trees or Do Nature-based Crafts. This is a great activity to do with young ones. Indoor days are perfect for arts and crafts. Pinterest is full of creative ideas.
- Volunteer. Local tree-planting, gardening and 4-H organizations are here to make a difference in our community.
We don’t know what the coming weeks will hold, and now more than ever, it’s important to take time to pause, relax and continue to celebrate all things positive.
Have a happy and healthy Arbor Week!