Crowds crop up at 20th annual Tree Giveaway

Image of Shawna O'Neill
By Shawna O'Neill
Crowds crop up at 20th annual Tree Giveaway
From left, Charlie Chalette helping volunteer and dad Mason Chalette on Saturday, April 27 (Shawna O'Neill/Cornwall Seaway News).

CORNWALL, Ontario – A long line of locals patiently waited to receive free seedlings outside of the Raisin Region Conservation Authority on Saturday, April 27 as part of the 20th annual Earth Day Tree Giveaway.

Nine-year-old brothers Kaleb and Karson St. Pierre were in attendance with their family and expressed their understanding of how important trees are to the environment.

“If we cut down all the trees, things would die,” said Kaleb.

“We learned about it in school last year,” said Karson. The brothers, who attend Sacred Heart Catholic School, are on the Green Team. “We learn about earth and recycling (on the Green Team).”

Lisa Van De Ligt, Communications Specialist with Raisin Region Conservation Authority, said the event is always well attended and was expecting to see at least 500 attendees this year.
“Thanks to our generous sponsors, we have 10 white spruce seedlings that families can take in bundles…overall we have 2,000 white spruce to hand out today to the residents of Cornwall and SDG,” said Van De Ligt.
The event also had potted trees and tree planting supplies for sale, and a few artisan vendors and a live painter were present. A silent auction was available for bidding and a cake was donated by Baxtrom’s Your Independent Grocer. A BBQ lunch also took place, and a clean-up effort of Gray’s Creek was underway, organized by Royal LePage.

“We have invited some extra people to participate today to celebrate with us,” said Van De Ligt, referring to the 20th anniversary. “We are so fortunate to have an amazing list of sponsors that make the event happen.”

“It’s important to have an event like this to encourage people to plant trees on their property. Trees are certainly very important, they have so many benefits, such as carbon sequestration, habitat for wildlife, there’s the aesthetic aspect…and we certainly want to encourage people to increase the forest cover in our area,” added Van De Ligt.


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