Friday, April 30 is Arbor Day this year, as well as the kick-off of a year-long celebration leading up to the 150th anniversary of the holiday in 2022.
All week this week, The Arbor Day Foundation has pledged to plant one tree for every Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook user who posts a photo of a tree with the hashtag #ArborDay. Up to 50,000 trees could be planted as a result of these social media posts. In addition, Peanuts is matching the trees planted, bringing the potential total to 100,000 trees.
The first Arbor Day was celebrated with more than 1 million trees planted in Nebraska on April 10, 1872. Since then, the last Friday in April has been dedicated to celebrating and preserving trees. In 1988, the Arbor Day Foundation partnered with the US Forest Service. This collaboration has resulted in planting over 25 million trees.
There are many ways to celebrate Arbor Day, the most common and impactful being to actually plant a tree. Many people opt to plant a tree in memory of a loved one or in honor of a new baby to watch them grow together. Organizing a community beautification project is another great way to celebrate.
Recognizing the holiday with children is not only fun, but also provides an opportunity to pass on knowledge and respect for nature to the next generation. ArborDay.org has a handy online tree identification guide to take on hike and learn about the different kinds of trees in your area. Gather leaves, pinecones, acorns and other natural elements along your hike for a fun art project back at home.