Elora United Church celebrating 175 years with tree plantings

The congregation of Elora United Church recently kicked off the celebration of its 175th anniversary with a tree planting project.

The members are hoping to plant 175 trees in recognition of that history.

The project – Anniversary Ar­bour: Heritage and Hope – officially got under way with a fundraising drive within the church. With every $10 dona­tion from a member, a leaf was placed on a giant tree mural in the church’s foyer.

“The con­gre­gation got be­hind the project and we quickly had a growing number of leav­es on our tree,” said project co-ordinator Betty Weinstein.   She added, “The name seemed appropriate for the project, con­sidering the past history of the church, along with growth in the future as represented by the new trees.”

With assistance from the Elora Environment Centre and NeighbourWoods, the church was able to identify appropriate locations and species to be plant­ed.

“We wanted expert guid­ance to ensure that what was be­ing planted would not only survive, but thrive, while add­ing long- term beauty to the community” noted Weinstein.

The tree planting occurred over two days.

The first was on April 28 along the walking path behind Elora Public School.

Assis­tance for the first planting came from a number of stud­ents from CWDHS in the environmental program.

An added bonus came from Elora Public School being in the process of reconfiguring the school grounds, and part of that included landscaping and plant­ing. Grade 7 and 8 stud­ents assisted with watering the newly planted trees.

The following Saturday, members met at Elora United Church and planted a number of trees on the church property.   Trees were also planted on a number of church members’ prop­erties.

More trees were plan­t­ed at Bethany United Church, which is a sister con­gregation on 4th Line and Concession 10, near Ponsonby.

The six foot high sugar maples were subsidized by an organization called Maple Leav­es Forever.  That allowed for the planting of many more trees than anticipated."

The church plans to have other events throughout the year to celebrate its anni­versary.