Dexter Rotary Plants Trees Near New Sports Fields

Dexter Rotary spearheaded a tree-planting effort this past Friday and Saturday, May 18 & 19 as part of their annual Spring project of expanding the wooded greenery in the Dexter area.

I was there, for a bit anyway. About the time school got out on Friday, I’m lugging load after load of topsoil with my broken, but capable wheelbarrow along the shoulder of busy Parker Road. “Plant trees,” they said. “It’ll be fun,” they said. “There should be a reporter there,” Dick Weaver said. So I joined in.

Working with volunteers from Dexter Community School system, Granger Construction, local Boy Scout troops, Mill Creek’s CS&L (Community Service and Leadership), the STRIVE program as well as a host of volunteers from around the Dexter community, the trees were planted in the vicinity of the new athletic fields currently under construction at Dexter High School.

The project stems from Rotary International’s 2018 goal of planting a tree for each of its 1.6 million members worldwide. Dexter’s local chapter planted 41 Norway pines, one for each of its members, to help offset the trees that had been cleared in construction of the new sports complex.

The pines range in size from 3 to 4 feet tall and were planted along the east side of Parker Road in front of the high school and the new fields. The strategy is to help create an eventual noise and wind barrier for the competing teams and spectators.

John McGinnis and son Ryan working hard both days

A huge note of recognition and thanks goes to Rotary member John McGinnis for his Herculean effort in organizing the whole project, from working with the school and utility companies to find a good location, to ordering the trees, organizing the Rotarians and others for planting, to power-digging the holes without knocking out the high school’s fiber optic lines, and for being there all day, both days, along with his son Ryan moving dirt and planting.

After a couple hours, I had helped get six trees in the ground. Although my arms felt stretched down to my wobbly knees, they were right, it was fun. I’m quickly learning that Dexter’s Rotarians can make any event enjoyable. I loaded up and left for home figuring as soon as I could lift my arms up to my laptop, I’d write an article just as Mr. Weaver directed.

The trees were purchased by Dexter Rotary for $4,500 and continue the long-standing tradition of Rotary’s annual spring tree-planting. Dexter Rotary is a group of committed Dexter area residents who believe, as their motto states, “Service Above Self.” In addition to tree-planting, Dexter Rotary also sponsors the Memorial Day Parade, sponsors international exchange students, supports STRIVE for high school students, funds scholarships, and many other community projects.

You can learn about Dexter Rotary from their website.

Zachary DeRuyver set the pace for his dad Chris
“Not bad for a 71-year-old,” says Dick Weaver. We all agreed.

Dexter’s robotics team, Dreadbots, added their muscle to the effort


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