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.