Let’s Plant Trees in Downtown Hershey

Downtown Hershey is going to be a little greener this weekend. On Saturday, April 28, the Derry Environmental Action Committee (DEAC) will be planting 23 trees along Hershey’s streets. The DEAC has partnered with the Township of Derry on a tree planting program funded partially through a TreeVitalize grant.

The DEAC welcomes any volunteers who want to help plant trees, especially kids! The Derry Township Public Works Department will dig the holes for the trees and place a tree by each hole. Volunteers will then help to plant the trees. Feel free to bring any tools you may need. Volunteers will begin to gather on Saturday, April 28 at 8:45 a.m. at the Rec Center, 605 Cocoa Avenue, in Hershey. Shortly after 9:00 a.m., they will conduct an Arbor Day/Tree City USA ceremony at a nearby residence and plant the first tree of the day. Come on out!

TreeVitalize is a public-private partnership established by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to help build capacity within communities to plan for, plant, and care for trees. They also offer educational training to help citizens understand the diverse benefits of trees and the importance of properly planting and maintaining them.

The trees being planted are about 10 feet tall and the Township will be using an auger to drill into the ground and create holes for the trees. However in areas with underground utilities, the holes will all be dug by hand to prevent any ruptures. The trees will then be planted, mulched, and watered! Ultimately, this program will help to increase tree canopy in the village and Downtown Hershey, providing numerous environmental and aesthetic benefits in the community.

Derry Township has been recognized as a Tree City for many years. This designation requires a locality to have a Tree Board or Department, have a Tree Care Ordinance, a Community Forestry Budget of $2.00 per capita, and observe Arbor Day. A Tree City recognizes the value of trees, the provision of shade, the aesthetic value of trees, and the practical value of trees: filtering polluted runoff, helping to minimize flooding, cleaning streams, improving air quality and reducing energy costs.

Please consider spending your Saturday morning with the DEAC!