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December 2012


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National conference highlights importance of the urban forest

  Friends of Grand Rapids Parks' Urban Forest Project Coordinator, Lee Mueller, received national recognition in November from the Alliance for Community Trees, a national nonprofit urban forestry organization. Lee received a travel scholarship donated by Bartlett Tree Experts to help attend the annual national conference of urban and community forestry leaders in Sacramento, CA, This November.

Lee attended both the Alliance for Community Trees Membership Day and the Partners in Community Forestry National Conference, presented by the Arbor Day Foundation. This yearly, national conference highlights innovative approaches to urban forestry and presents an opportunity to converse with organizations from around the United States. Lee was able to meet with other Michigan forestry representatives discover unique approaches to urban forestry across the nation, and network with a wide array of non-profit and industry professionals. 

Of particular interest were Sacramento's use of blue trees to highlight the importance of protecting trees as urban assets, displays of new technologies for urban forest management, and collaborations across the country with utilities to promote reforestation on private lands. Lee will be using some of these examples to further bolster urban forestry programs here in Grand Rapids. His attendance was just another way the Friends of Grand Rapids Parks is taking the Grand Rapids Urban Forest Project to the national stage.


Photo Caption: Lee Mueller talks with  Margaret Studer - Genesee Conservation District, Kevin Sayers - MI DNR, Dean Hay- Greening of Detroit at the Partners in Community Forestry conference

Please consider a gift to Friends of Grand Rapids Parks this holiday season

  Hopefully this unseasonably warm weather still has you thinking about parks. This is a critical time of year  for the Friends of Grand Rapids Parks to raise the funds needed to sustain and advance our mission to protect, enhance and expand parks and public spaces in our city. 



We depend on the generosity of local volunteers, contractors, donors, foundations, and corporations to fund what it takes to plant trees, plan new parks, complete park projects, conduct workshops, and organize events.  We couldn't do it without great partners, and each new and renewing Friend helps us make a positive impact in our community for parks, trees and green space in 2013! So please become or renew as a Friend today.

Friends of Grand Rapids Parks is also currently raising funds to match a $30,000 challenge grant from the Steelcase Foundation for our the neighborhood sponsorship and volunteer program, Parks Alive. Each Parks Alive corporate or business sponsor will have their sponsorship matched 1:1 until January 10th, 2013.  Learn more about how  each dollar your company contributes to a new park improvement,  it will generate another dollar to support the program's volunteer engagement, park improvement and community education efforts.

Please contact Steve Faber at 616-821-8006 or for additional donation or  sponsorship information. 

There are two simple ways to give - click here or the donate button above to give online, or mail a check to Friends of GR Parks, po box 3199, Grand Rapids, MI 49501.  Friends of Grand Rapids Parks is a 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation, so contributions are tax deductible.


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