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The City of St. Augustine remains committed to providing accessibility to all and provides for handicapped accessible parking in the city. For a map of accessible parking locations, Click Here To notify the city regarding accessibility concerns contact Todd Grant, Public Works Deputy Director, Phn: 904.825.1040, Fax: 904.209.4286, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also write City of St. Augustine, P.O. Box 210, St. Augustine, FL 32085-0210.
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Under a grey sky and with a blustery wind, school children, residents and city officials gathered at the Hamilton Upchurch Part to commemorate St. Augustine's 30th annual Arbor Day on Friday, January 18.
As is the tradition, the ceremony included the planning of a tree by city officials, presentations by the city’s Street Tree Advisory Committee, and musical selections from kindergarten students from R. B. Hunt Elementary School. And, as is also a standing tradition, the ceremony will conclude with Smokey Bear assisting in the distribution of a variety of saplings to all in attendance. This year’s giveaway tress are River Birch, Live Oaks and Red Cedars.
This year’s ceremony marked the 30th year the city has received the prized designation of Tree City USA from the National Arbor Day Foundation. There are 160 cities in the State of Florida which have received the designation of Tree City USA, but only 10 have received the designation longer than St. Augustine. In addition, the Foundation presented the city with the Tree City USA Growth Award, an honor it has received every year since 1991.
During the ceremony, the Mayor introduced Chuck Lippi, Chairman of the Street Tree Advisory Committee, who presented the city with a new Tree City USA flag that will fly at City Hall year round. Mr. Lippi also recognized the other members of the committee, Carol Bennett, Gina Burrell, Ann Derby, Catherine A. Duncan, Maureen Mitchell, Beth Segers, Corinne White, and Greg Dun.
The Mayor also extended a thank you to the kindergarten students at R. B. Hunt for their two songs, "The Green Grass Grows All Around," and "
We've Got the Whole World In Our Hands," The Mayor recognized Principal Don Steele and kindergarten teachers Susan Davis, Anne Denune, Linda Hatton, Karen Howle, Janet Regan, Alison Wheeler, and Lynn Wilkinson for making the students' participation possible.
While National Arbor Day is celebrated on the last Friday in April, individual states hold ceremonies on dates better suited to their own tree-planting season. Florida’s Arbor Day is celebrated on the third Friday in January. This year that was January 18.
The site for the annual Arbor Day ceremony and the type of tree planted changes from year to year. Over the last decade, ceremonies have included planting Holly, Live Oak, Red Maple and Sycamore trees at Sebastian Inland Harbor, the Francis Field, Joseph Pomar, Jr. Recreational Facility, Eddie Vickers Recreational Facility, Government House, J. Edward “Red” Cox Recreational Facility, the Plaza de la Constitución, Davenport Park and the Fullerwood neighborhood. To see a list of locations and types of trees planted during the city's of Arbor Day ceremonies, click here.