PHOTO GALLERY: Dowagiac proclaims Friday as Arbor Day

Published 2:38 pm Wednesday, April 27, 2022

DOWAGIAC — As branches around town begin budding and blooming, a local city government has recognized the significance of trees in the community.

During its regular meeting on Monday, the Dowagiac City Council proclaimed the last Friday in April to be Arbor Day, and declared the importance of trees to the city and its people. 

“Trees reduce the erosion of our precious topsoil by wind and water, cut heating and cooling costs, moderate the temperature, clean the air, produce life-giving oxygen and provide habitat for wildlife,” said Mayor Don Lyons, in the proclamation. “Trees, in our city, increase property values [and] enhance the economic vitality of business areas.”

According to the Arbor Day Foundation, the first Arbor Day took place on April 10, 1872, after a Nebraska City newspaper editor and tree enthusiast Julius Sterling Morton proposed a tree-planting holiday to the Nebraska state board of agriculture. Morton was said to have led an effort to plant one million trees that day. Today, Arbor Day is celebrated in all 50 states. 

Dowagiac is recognized as a Tree City, USA, and was recognized by the National Arbor Day Foundation as the first “Dogwood Tree City USA,” according to the proclamation.

“Trees, wherever they are planted, are a source of joy and renewal,” said Lyons, in the proclamation. “I urge all citizens to celebrate Arbor Day and to support efforts to protect our trees and woodlands, and I urge all citizens to plant and foster trees to promote the well-being of this and future generations.”