Burien Honors Arbor Day & Dottie Harper With Tree Planting
Photos and Story by Janet Grella
A small group of people from the Burien Arts, city and Parks communities, as well as friends of the late Dottie Harper gathered on Wednesday in Dottie Harper Park to plant a commemorative tree in Dottie’s honor.
By proclamation of the city council, Mayor Joan McGilton proclaimed April 8th as Arbor Day in Burien. She also shared a story about Dottie and said from the parks to the arts:
“Dottie made it happen in Burien.”
Micki McNaughton of the Washington State Department of Natural Resources presented Mayor McGilton with a Tree City USA Flag Award. This is the sixth year that Burien has been acknowledged as a Tree City. The Tree City flag will hang at the Burien Community Center.
According to Michael Lafreniere, Director of Parks Recreation and Cultural Services for Burien, a city has to meet requirements from the Arbor Day Foundation to be a Tree City USA, including:
- A Tree Board Department
- A Tree Care Ordinance
- A Community Forestry Program with a minimum annual budget of $2.00 per capita (includes tree and tree related efforts)
- An Arbor Day Observance and Proclamaion
Erin Williamson of the Burien Arts Association remarked that although she never knew Dottie Harper, she has heard her called “passionate” and a “firecracker”.
The tree is a white flowering dogwood and was selected by Burien Parks as it fairly showy and will provide a great contrast with other deciduous trees in the park, according to Park Supervisor Myron Clinton.