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Passing on the importance of Arbor Day to the next generation

Bell Middle Schoolers help Golden plant trees at Ulysses Park

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Some students part of Bell Middle School’s Interact Club may already be on their way to becoming future arborists.

“It’s awesome to see young people this enthusiastic about planting trees,” said Jacob Burbach, a Golden forestry technician. “As we move toward advancing technology, it’s also good to teach the younger generations the importance of using your hands and working outdoors.”

On Arbor Day, April 20, six Bell Middle Schoolers joined Golden’s Forestry Department in planting trees at Ulysses Park, 1205 Ulysses St.

“They learn when they’re active, and this lesson will stick with them,” said Nancy Paricio, a seventh-grade teacher at Bell and the school’s Interact Club sponsor. “When they’re older, they’ll care about trees and the environment in their community.”

But, she added, it’s a fun learning experience for them because they enjoyed getting to play in the dirt.

Environmental issues such as global warming and climate change are important to Iain Remington, 14, he said, which is one reason he wanted to participate in the tree planting.

“Planting trees is an easy solution to these issues that anyone can do,” Remington said.

He added this was the first time he participated in an Arbor Day event with the city, but that he has experience with planting trees from doing it in his backyard with his family and with friends on other projects.

Hannah Lane, 13, also believes that everyone should partake in helping the environment, she said. Her main concern revolves around deforestation and habitat loss.

“We can make a big difference here in our community,” she said. “It’s really important for us to do the small things daily because they can make a big difference.”

The Interact Club is a school-and-community service extracurricular activity sponsored by the Rotary Club of Golden. This year, there are about 25 students in the club, ranging from sixth-through-eighth grade.

“The kids in this club love serving their community,” Paricio said.

This is the seventh year for the club to be involved with the city’s Arbor Day.

“We like to involve the kids because they’re our future,” said Billy Iannopollo, Golden’s city forester.

They learn to care for trees and protect and maintain the health of the trees in our community, he added.

“It’s very important to pass that on to the next generation,” Iannopollo said.

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