Tree City USA is celebrating 40 years! The following guest post is part of a Tree City USA series that features the 16 communities that have been recognized all 40 years of the program.
Written by: Jim Walsh
We at the Township of Parsippany are very proud of our association with the Arbor Day Foundation and the Tree City USA program. Over the years, I have observed many Tree City signs in numerous towns throughout the state. When we display our new signs indicating 40 years of support for the Arbor Day Foundation, our residents share in our achievement. The citizens of Parsippany have always been involved in advocating the importance of trees, not just in our township but in the state and country as a whole.
When weather events like Hurricanes Sandy and Irene impact our town and state, residents are always concerned about the effect these events have on trees. We receive many calls about how to prevent and repair weather damage sustained by trees during such extreme events. Through phone calls, social media, and other means of communication, the public is able to alert us to ensure that damaged trees are replaced.
Arbor Day in Parsippany is celebrated annually with a popular ceremony at Town Hall. Students from our elementary schools participate in this event so that they can continue to learn about the importance of maintaining our trees. This year’s celebration was held at Veterans Park. As in years past, our local Boy Scouts bagged seedlings the evening before the event. These seedlings were then distributed to schools, libraries, and other township offices to be dispersed for planting by residents throughout the Township. Additional seedlings were available at the presentation ceremony at Veterans Park on April 29th.
This year’s Arbor Day event was the largest ever held in Parsippany. Teaching our children the importance of trees has a positive effect on the entire community and helps them realize that quality of life is enhanced when we take time to maintain the trees in our landscape. We must also replace trees that are lost to weather events and other events we cannot control. Giving away seedlings every year during our Arbor Day celebration is one way the Township can help educate our children about the way trees help improve the lives of the people in our community. We hope that the students will take this lesson with them for the rest of their lives and help educate the next generation about the responsibility each of us has in continuing to show how much better our lives are with more trees in the landscape.
The Township of Parsippany-Troy Hills is extremely proud and honored to have attained the milestone of being a Tree City for 40 years. We are grateful to the many residents who have supported these endeavors over the past four decades. Trees give us life so we must do whatever we can to preserve theirs.
Photo courtesy of Jim Walsh.