On Saturday, October 26, from 10am – Noon, Friends of the Parks of Allen County invites citizens to partner with area parks & trails departments, non-profits, businesses, neighborhoods, and community volunteers to plant new trees in parks and public spaces during the 18th annual Great Tree Canopy Comeback.

This year, the City of Fort Wayne Greenways & Trails Department and Fort Wayne Trails will also participate in the effort. This event has evolved to include invasive species removal to help sustainably continue forest regeneration in all parks and trails around Allen County. To combat invasive species like Honeysuckle, Autumn Olive and Callery Pear, among others, there is more diversity when it comes to volunteering. The four different volunteer categories include: Planters in groups of five people planting trees; Tree Captains to lead groups of Planters; Cutters to remove invasive plants; Couriers to transport the debris to a designated disposal area.

Volunteers of all ages are critical to the success of the event and are encouraged to sign up and help restore the tree canopy. More than 250 trees will be planted in the following parks this year: Foster, McMillen, Shoaff, and Vesey Parks in Fort Wayne, New Haven Community Center and along the Pufferbelly Trail. Invasive species will be removed in Allen County’s Fox Island, Vesey Park in Fort Wayne, and along the Pufferbelly Trail.

Volunteers are asked to register in advance by emailing FotPoAC@gmail.com, responding to the Facebook event, or downloading the signup form at www.facebook.com/yeaparks and mail it to P.O. Box 10152. T-shirts will be given to volunteers who pre-register by October 7.

Volunteers need to bring gloves, shovels, loppers, rakes and a wheelbarrow (if possible). Participants should also dress for the weather, as the work will be completed rain or shine.

It is the mission of the Friends of the Parks to promote the stewardship and celebration of the scenic, historic, and recreational resources of the parks and public spaces in Fort Wayne and Allen County. Visit yeaparks.com to donate a tree or for more information.

The Waynedale News Staff
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