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WJBD - Local News - Several Turn Out to Keep Salem Beautiful

Iuka fifth grade students (left to right) Hailey Upton and Brooke Hays display the winning t-shirt design made by their classmate Abby Juarez. Keep Salem Beautiful's Rita Black (right) made the announcement.

Salem Mayor John Raymer on stage at Bryan Memorial Park explaining distribution of free trees following Arbor Day Proclamation. City Arborist Dave Sands and Tree Board member Doris Purcell looking on.

Several Turn Out to Keep Salem Beautiful

By Bruce Kropp, WJBD News

About 75 people turned out for the Keep Salem Beautiful cleanup of the Bryan Memorial Park area and participated in the city's Arbor Day program that followed.   Salem Mayor John Raymer noted Arbor Day dates back to 1872 when trees were brought to the prairie lands of Nebraska.   He notes much like Nebraska, the initial settlers found few trees across the prairies of Illinois.  "Trees reduce erosion.  They protect our soil.  They do everything from shade us, to break the wind, to giving squirrels a place to live.  They are oxygen producers.  What you breathe comes from these trees.  And so one day a year we stop and we recognize that.  Trees are renewable.  Our paper comes from trees.  Many of the things in our homes--the flooring, fuels for fires.  They beautify our world," Raymer said.

After the proclamation was read declaring Arbor Day in Salem for Saturday, all those in attendance were given a free tree seedling.

In the Keep Salem Beautiful cleanup that preceded the Arbor Day program, 40 garbage bags full of trash were collected.   Iuka fifth grader Abby Juarez was honored for having the winning design selected for this year's t-shirt given to all the volunteers who assisted with the clean-up.  Abby Juarez Volunteers were also treated to a hot dog lunch.

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