By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Caswell students help city celebrate trees, Arbor Day
Trees make for a better Ceres.

Just ask Caswell School students sitting in the shade of mature trees for the Arbor Day observance. They'll tell you they liked the coolness, the clean air and the pretty sight that trees offer.

City officials mixed with teachers, students and school district officials on Wednesday afternoon, May 12 to celebrate trees as well as the city of Ceres being designated - for the 17th time - the title of Tree City USA by the Arbor Day Foundation.

The wiggly student body patiently sat through a reading of the city Arbor Day proclamation by Councilman Chris Vierra as well as a recitation of the benefits of trees. But most were thinking about recreation employee Traci Dayton-Farris who mentioned she would be doling out the contents of 540 bags of cookies at the end of the ceremony. Those were doled out by members of the Ceres Garden Club.

Vierra said the city takes care of 15,000 street trees and park trees.

Ceres has met the four criteria to be dubbed Tree City USA. The city must have:

• A tree board or department that plants and maintains trees;

• An annual Arbor Day observance;

• A tree care ordinance;

• A program that allocates at least $2 per resident for the care of city trees.

Prior to the ceremony, the K-6 students were asked to be a part of an Arbor Day poster contest. Winners of the contest, themed "Trees are Terrific and Energywise," were announced at the ceremony.

At the conclusion of the ceremony, students Dahlia Ramirez and Andrew Aguilar were selected to help city parks workers plant a raywood ash tree on a patch of green on the playground. The city also planted a Chinese Pistache in the front of the school. Principal Lubinksy was grateful, saying the school recently lost some trees.

Vierra emceed the event and spoke about the value that trees have in cleaning the air. Vierra serves as Ceres' representative on the San Joaquin Valley Unified Air Pollution Control District.

Trees help cleanse the air by intercepting airborne particles, reducing heat, and absorbing such pollutants as carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide. Trees remove this air pollution by lowering air temperature, through respiration, and by retaining particulates.