Town's Arbor Day event takes root in October


October 16, 2002|By Pat Brodowski | Pat Brodowski,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

THE MEMORIAL Tree Grove in Manchester was the site of annual Arbor Day activities Sunday.

Donna Baker, a forester for the state, unveiled a flag and trophy awarded by the National Arbor Day Foundation marking the town's 10th year as a Tree City USA. The foundation also presented Manchester with an award for the sixth straight year for its expansion of tree programs.

Baker assisted Cub Scouts and pupils from North Carroll Middle School in planting 10 new and replacement trees in the grove. Members of the Manchester Tree Commission watered and mulched the new trees.

Arbor Day, nationally celebrated in April, is held in October in Manchester to coincide with the best planting time for trees.

"This overcast sky and drizzle is perfect for planting trees," Baker said, as the 10 youngsters plied the earth with shovels to sink the 5-foot saplings of maple, dogwood, oak and other hardwoods. The hardwood grove was designed by math pupils of Manchester teacher Betty Smith in 1999.

"They planned an entry path from the school to the pond, but now, people just wander through," Smith said, while helping seventh-graders Mike Praet, Garrett Hayes and Ricky Hyde, who were digging in to earn student service learning hours.

A beautiful addition to the grove is the picturesque entrance gate constructed in the spring by Eagle Scout Ted Bubert of Boy Scout Troop 381. He designed it to specifications detailed by the town, the tree commission and the Manchester Parks Foundation.

"There had been a split-rail fence [off Walnut Street] and people visiting needed a better entrance, so I built it with the intent of being aesthetically pleasing and wheelchair accessible, while preventing four-wheel vehicles," Ted said.

Ted took ideas from garden magazines to design an open pergola with interior benches that seat a total of eight people comfortably. He used drafting skills learned in high school to draw blueprints, and gathered donations of materials, cash and a construction team from the Scout troop.

For three weekends, two adults handled power tools and a crew of five Scouts set four posts into the rocky site and built the gate to stand about 8 feet tall, with carved trusses notched into the frame. Lattice panels support flowering vines.

Local businesses made contributions to the project, including flowering vines from Carroll Gardens in Westminster, a gas-powered auger from Ben's Rentals, a cash donation from Mercer Carpet One, materials from 84 Lumber, and advice from Hirt Landscaping.

"Kopp's Lumber of Lineboro was wonderful for Ted. They gave him almost all the lumber," said Martha Bubert, his mother. "The goal is to get everything donated. It was all smaller local businesses that really helped out."

Ted, 18, completed the Eagle Scout paperwork before heading in August to University of Maryland, College Park to study aerospace engineering, following his hobby of aviation history. He received an appreciative letter from the parks foundation.

"They told me the visitors have complimented on an entrance that made an improvement on the appearance of the grove and made it look official," Ted said.

"The Eagle Scouts have been a big help to us," said Ellen Rugemer, who oversees the Eagle projects as a member of the foundation and Charlotte's Quest Nature Center. The nature park has benefited from bridges and trails constructed by Scouts.

In sight of the new gate, the next generation of Scouts was at work. Rugemer's son, Travis Rugemer, 7, planted trees with fellow Cub Scouts of Pack 320 of Manchester. Under the guidance of Webelos leader Karen Haines, participating Scouts were Drew Rose, Brett Bohli, Lorne Haines, Kevin Utz, all age 10, and Matt and Kent Baughman, both age 7.

Steve Bankert, town councilman and parks foundation liaison, has supported the development of the nature center and tree grove on what had been his ancestral farm.

Bankert read a town proclamation noting the aesthetic and economic value of trees. Don Diseroad and George Hooper trucked water to the site. Tree Commission members, including Henry Leskinen and Emile Deckert, also helped.

"When people turn out like this, it makes you feel good," Bankert said, walking through the grove busy with Scouts and adults to grab a shovel to help start another new tree.

Crafters needed

The first event in North Carroll to celebrate the coming holiday season is Christmas at the Church, held by St. John's United Methodist Church. The event will take place from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nov. 2. Proceeds benefit church programs.

Producers of quality craft items can sign up for table space available at the annual event held indoors in the social hall.

Silent auction items are also sought.

The event includes a roast beef or turkey salad luncheon for $6. Fast food, homemade baked items, and various craft and gift items made by members of the church will be available for purchase.

Information: church office, 410-239-8088.

Pat Brodowski's North neighborhood column appears each Wednesday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.

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