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Mayor’s Greening Initiative needs volunteers to ‘green up’ GR

Hands Planting Small Tree with roots_54431

Hands Planting Small Tree with roots in a garden on green background

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Keeping Grand Rapids parks green, is important to the health of our community. Friends of Grand Rapids Parks understand that a healthy park system is a long-term commitment. This month, there’s a big event to help you get involved. Volunteer registration opens today for the 2017 Mayor’s Greening Initiative tree planting, which takes place Friday, April 28 in the neighborhood around Martin Luther King Park on the city’s Southeast Side.

This effort – in partnership with Friends of Grand Rapids Parks, the City of Grand Rapids’ Forestry Department and the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce, will bring together community and corporate volunteers to plant up to 500 trees in the neighborhood around MLK Park. It also will honor an individual who has had a significant impact in the neighborhood.

The event takes place on Arbor Day, a holiday where people around the world are encouraged to plant and care for trees.

“We know that trees add to the quality of life for those who live, work and play in our city,” Mayor Rosalynn Bliss said. “I look forward to again partnering with members of our community to plant trees in our city and honor a person who is making a difference in the lives of others.”

Get involved! The tree planting will begin at 9 a.m. with a brief ceremony announcing the 2017 Mayor’s Greening Initiative honoree. Five hundred volunteers are needed for this half-day tree planting, which will run until noon.

Individual volunteers may register online at Groups, including businesses and other organizations, may register online or contact Rachel Skylis at Friends of Grand Rapids Parks at or 616.288.7209.

The inaugural Mayor’s Greening Initiative in 2016 launched to help the city reach its goal of a 40 percent tree canopy, and helped to plant more than 400 trees across the city.

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