Celebration Forest Legacy Planting

Project type: Park Naturalization
Year: 2020
Season: Fall

On Thursday, September 10th, we kicked off the 2020 planting season with our annual Celebration Forest event! In true 2020 fashion, things went differently than previous years, but with a little perseverance we were still able to have a beautiful three days of planting trees in our legacy forest.

Normally held on a weekend afternoon in May, this year’s event was postponed until September and took place over three days.This allowed us to ensure our guests, staff, and volunteers were able to safely plant their trees.

This year marks the Celebration Forest’s 10th anniversary. Since May 2011, we have seen thousands of people plant thousands of trees in memory and in celebration of loved ones. In addition to honouring loved ones, this forest has helped us restore an ecosystem that formerly supported very little life.

In the spirit of ecological restoration, all of the trees planted in the Celebration Forest are native to the London area. ReForest London staff assess the planting site each year, determining which tree species will thrive in the area and ensuring the best chance for survival.This year we had over 300 guests plant 152 native trees in the Celebration Forest over the 3 day event. Each group was invited to select a tree, choose a location, and plant the tree with their loved ones. They were then able to spend time at their tree, having an intimate moment of remembrance or celebration and the opportunity to experience peace and serenity.

Recently, as part of ReForest London, my children and I planted a tree at Westminster Ponds in memory of my late husband, Bill. It was a positive, uplifting experience! Rather than a farewell or ending, it was the beginning of a new life in this beautiful white pine. Sincere appreciation to the staff members who were most caring and helpful.

– Norma Clare and Family, tree planters at our 2020 Celebration Forest event

This year, not all who purchased or were honoured with a tree were able to make it out to the event. Luckily, we have a dedicated group of staff and volunteers who were more than willing and happy to plant these trees. We were also grateful to have a small (but mighty!) group of volunteers from Mercer Group come out and help us get all of the trees planted during the week following the event.

What would we be without the support of our volunteers? At this year’s event, we had 20 knowledgeable and helpful volunteers come out with us over the 3 days, guiding people to the Celebration Forest site and ensuring their trees were planted with care. Without the continued devotion of volunteers, we would not be able to host an event of this calibre, so we would like to extend a special thank you to these individuals.

Thank you, as well, to all who purchased a tree in Celebration or in Memory of a loved one and to everyone who came out and planted a tree, despite the unusual circumstances of the year. Your participation helps us in our goal towards creating a greener future!

We are so thankful to all of our sponsors that were able to make this year’s event such a success. We would like to thank EnablyticsLondon Mechanical Plumbing & HeatingHorizon Leadership Institute Inc., and Nicholson Sheffield Architects Inc. for contributing to this year’s legacy planting!

Thank you to our Lead Event Sponsors

Hillen Nursery Ltd. is located 20 minutes west of London, Ontario in the quaint agriculturally rich town of Mount Brydges, Ontario. Situated on a picturesque 250 acres and producing roughly one million plants annually, Hillen Nursery Ltd. has become one of the most trusted and respected nurseries in the industry. Founded by Peter and Ellie Hillen in 1983, Hillen Nursery Ltd. remains as dedicated and passionate today about continuing with the vision set forth by its founders. As this industry continues to grow, Hillen Nursery Ltd. remains poised to grow and change with it. One thing that will not change is their dedication and commitment to providing top quality 100% Ontario grown nursery products.

Visit Affordable Funeral Options for more information regarding their services.

Interested in purchasing a Tree Gift to be planted at our Celebration Forest? Order yours today and create a lasting memory with your loved ones, while also contributing to a greener future.