By Shawn O’Brate
RIVERTON – Over 150 years ago a Nebraska newspaper editor named J. Sterling Morton proposed a day every year dedicated to planting trees, a day that is now called Arbor Day. This past weekend, in honor of Arbor Day, the Riverton Tree Board did what it has done for 22 years and beautified the town with trees.
Mayor Tim Hancock and the Wyoming State Forestry Division were both present to not only honor Arbor Day, but to help award Riverton with its 22nd consecutive title as a “Tree City” by the Arbor Day Foundation. After the mayor read his proclamation stating that this past Saturday was the 22nd anniversary of the town’s celebration of Arbor Day, the trees were planned and planted across two plots of land in Riverton.
The softball fields on Smith Road have their locations primed for new trees to go along with the trees they planted last Arbor Day, and at City Park’s splash pad where two separate trees were planted to help give the future generations of children shade when they’re playing softball or in the park.
Planting trees is important for a multitude of reasons. It’s important for conservation, as trees reduce the erosion of top soil; they aesthetically add value to the town, clean the air, moderate temperatures, produce oxygen, cut heating and cooling costs, provide habitats for wildlife and give people wood for homes, fires and other products.
Remember that this summer when you look at the empty land in your front or back yard.