Pierre Recognized As Tree City USA 36 Straight Years

(KCCR) — The City of Pierre has been recognized for the 36th time as a Tree City U-S-A. To mark the effort a tree was planted in Hipple Park in honor of Mayor Steve Harding. Rachel Ormseth, Urban Forestry Coordinator with the South Dakota Department of Agriculture says a lot goes into becoming a Tree City U-S-A and Pierre has done those things for three and a half decades…

“This means having a tree board, having a per capita budget that they spend on their trees, but then also having an Arbor Day Proclamation and celebration which is exactly what we’re doing here today together.  So each year Arbor Day Foundation sends a flag and a couple of other goodies that the city can use to show their citizens their pride in their urban forestry and again I will mention they have been certified for 36 years straight which is extremely impressive because the oldest Tree Cities are at 37 years”
Pierre Arbor Board Chairman Art Smith says Pierre should be proud of being named a Tree City U-S-A community so consistently…

“36 years is a heck of a run, everybody should be proud of that.  Its traditional that we have a tree planted for each Mayor and we are in the Mayor’s Grove right now. We have some blacks it again to get replaced here soon, but it shows each tree; each Mayor’s choice of trees here.”

Mayor Steve Harding says the mark of 36 years shows the commitment city leaders have had to future generations…

“It shows me and I think shows the community of the important that are…you know the people before, us felt about trees and Arbor Day and how important it was to…to instill that in the in the next generation.  So this is a particularly great honor for me and you know other than the military and college I was born and raised here until I can remember playing in the cottonwoods on the river bottom above the dam before the dam was even there and so if you know what to me that was just a not only childhood memory, but the cottonwood is the Missouri River tree.  I’m very proud and thankful that we can plan another one for our community for future generations.”
The Tree City U-S-A flag will be hoisted atop a new flagpole installed at the Pierre Community Orchard located just east of the Park and Recreation Shop on Sully Avenue.