The Environmental Quality Advisory Board and the City of Oak Ridge are sponsoring Oak Ridge’s 28th Annual Arbor Day Observance on Friday, March 1 at 10:00 a.m. at Willow Brook Elementary School in Oak Ridge.  This ceremony also marks the 25th year that the City of Oak Ridge has been recognized as a Tree City USA.


At the ceremony, District Foresters with the Department of Forestry will present the Tree City award and flag to City representatives Mayor Tom Beehan and Steve Kenworthy, Chairman of the Environmental Quality Advisory Board.  Tree City USA, a National Arbor Day Foundation program, recognizes U.S. towns and cities that develop comprehensive urban forestry programs.


To become a Tree City USA, a community must meet four standards: a legally constituted tree board; a community tree ordinance; a comprehensive community forestry program supported by a minimum of $2 per capita; and an Arbor Day proclamation and public tree planting ceremony. Communities must reapply for the Tree City USA designation annually.


The Arbor Day ceremony will include the planting of a willow tree donated by the City of Oak Ridge.  Kevin Hoyt, Director of the UT Forest Resources AgResearch and Education Center will present the tree to Lisa Light, Principal of Willow Brook Elementary School.


Previous Arbor Day observances have been held at the Oak Ridge Civic Center, the Senior Citizens Center, the U.T. Arboretum, Cedar Hill Neighborhood Park, and at Glenwood, Woodland, Linden, Willow Brook and St. Mary’s Elementary Schools.

For more information contact Athanasia Senecal Lewis, Community Development (865) 425-3574, or Jon Hetrick, Recreation and Parks Department, (865) 425-1867; visit the city’s website at

News media contact: Candice Brogan at (865) 425-3546 or