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Alaska Community Forestry Program Log


Juneau celebrates the 50th anniversary of Arbor Day in Alaska, 2016

Juneau celebrates the 50th anniversary of Arbor Day in Alaska, 2016

Arbor Day in Alaska - 50th Anniversary Celebration

The grown-ups dropped the ball, but kids saved the day -- Arbor Day.

In 1966, Alaska was the only state in the Union without an official Arbor Day. A group of Kodiak fourth-graders asked their state senator to do something about it, and he did. Soon Gov. Bill Egan was signing Alaska Arbor Day into law and, in May 1966, he used a golden shovel to plant a ceremonial tree near the Juneau Library.

From the beginning, Arbor Day has been a community celebration with a special emphasis on youth. In 1907, Pres. Theodore Roosevelt addressed his Arbor Day Proclamation to "the school children of the United States." In 1966, with help from the Forest Service, the Juneau Garden Club potted up a tree for every one of those Kodiak fourth-graders who got things started; the U.S. Coast Guard delivered them.

Monday, May 16, 2016 was the 50th anniversary of Alaska Arbor Day. A broad range of celebratory events were planned in communities around the state.

A collection of photos has been posted to the Division of Forestry's Facebook page, found HERE. If you would like to share photos from an event in your community, please contact the Alaska Community Forestry Program staff.


2016 Arbor Day Grants

The Alaska Community Forest Council has awarded grants to communities and organizations across the state to celebrate Arbor Day and the benefits of trees. Some funds are for special events and others to purchase a tree to plant. The council funded the grants using council funds, a grant from the Alaska Community Forestry Program, and a donation from the Alaska Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects.

Grants have been awarded to the following:

  • Anchorage Girl Scout Troop 550$200
  • University of Alaska Anchorage$75
  • Anchorage Parks Foundation$300
  • Anchorage Federation of Community Councils for Government Hill Community Orchard$300
  • Anchorage Federation of Community Councils for Northeast Community Council$300
  • Joint Base Elmendorf/Richardson for Mount Spurr Elementary School$500
  • Friends of Eagle River Nature Center$500
  • Mat Su/Copper River 4-H Volunteer Leaders Assn. & UAF Experimental Farm, Palmer$500
  • City of Palmer$250
  • Wrangell Institute for Science and Environment, Copper Center$300
  • University of Alaska Fairbanks and One Tree Alaska$500
  • Fairbanks Soil and Water Conservation District for Fairbanks Arbor Day Committee$300
  • Wilderness Retreats for Vets, Bethel$300
  • Mountain View Elementary, Kenai$300
  • Kaleidoscope School of Arts and Science, Kenai$315.05
  • Homer 4-H Club$145
  • Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies, Homer$300
  • Fawn Mountain Elementary, Ketchikan$200
  • Metlakatla Indian Community$300
  • Sitka Conservation Society and Alaska Way of Life 4-H Program$500
  • City and Borough of Sitka$425
  • Raven Correspondence School, Juneau$189.95
  • TOTAL$7,000

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2016 Community Orchard and Food Forest Grants

The Alaska Community Forestry Program has awarded grants to support the testing and demonstration of fruit trees that can be grown in Alaska. The trees will be planted this summer. These projects will help us evaluate the success of different fruit trees and community orchard and food forest models, share results, and make recommendations. Each grantee is providing matching funds or in-kind services to make the projects successful.

Grants have been awarded to the following:

  • Anchorage Federation of Community Councils for
        Government Hill Community Orchard and Gardens
  • City of Kenai Parks & Recreation Department Community Gardens$600
  • Georgeson Botanical Garden at UAF & American Society of Landscape Architects AK Chapter$700
  • Municipality of Anchorage Parks & Recreation Horticulture Bragaw Community Garden$650
  • Salvation Army for Clitheroe Center Garden in Anchorage $600
  • Mat-Su/Copper River 4-H District Volunteer Leaders Assn. at UAF Experimental Farm, Palmer$500
  • TOTAL$3,650

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