HAMLET – A cadre of fourth- and fifth-graders from Monroe Avenue Elementary School tucked three fledgling chaste trees into newly dug holes Friday, tamping down the dirt around them with the backs of shovels and bottoms of tennis shoes.
All of students wore dark green aprons proclaiming them “conservation rangers,” denoting participation in a tree-care and -planting program sponsored at their school by the Hamlet Tree and Beautification Group, which also organized the “Trees Are for Bees” Arbor Day celebration.
“Bees have got a lot stacked against them,” Ranger Jack Taylor of the N.C. Forest Service told those gathered for the occasion at Main Street Park.
“We, as stewards of the land and stewards of the forest, can do a lot to promote bees.”
The day also included a mandatory reading of Joyce Kilmer’s “only God can make a tree” poem, a tree rap, bee trivia and continuous reminders that trees help guarantee a healthier future for everyone.
Mayor Bill Bayless also read a “whereas”-loaded proclamation of Friday as Arbor Day in Hamlet, noting that “wherever planted, (trees) offer a source of joy and spiritual renewal.”
Three fifth-graders were honored for prize-winning posters made to honor the day: Addison Baldwin, first; Zoey Williams, second; and Karma Lindsey, third.
The posters will be displayed for a month at the Hamlet Library.
As the event drew to a close and the children and tree ladies dispersed, a fat bumblebee made lazy circles over the shelter at Main Street Park.
Reach Christine Carroll at 910-817-2673 or [email protected]