MASSENA - The Kiwanis Club continued a long tradition of giving out Norway Spruce saplings to celebrate Arbor Day. This year Kiwanis gave out 3,500 trees to second grade students from schools located between Malone and Watertown. The students who received the saplings were told of the many benefits that trees hold in our society and how to plant and care for the saplings.
The north country tradition began in Massena in 1956. It spread to a much larger footprint about 20 years ago as Kiwanis clubs throughout the North Country became involved. In recent years, SeaComm and Massena Electric have become sponsors of the event with Kiwanis.
With the departure of General Motors, who had previously been a sponsor of this program for years, SeaComm became aware of the void and agreed to become a major sponsor donating over $5,000 to the project. We recognize the value of this program to the children and the communities in which we serve, according to Vice President of Loan Administration Ron L. Smith, who is also a Kiwanis member. This program speaks to who we are as a credit union, following the belief in people-helping-people. The Arbor Day program touches each community we serve and every school within our charter, making sense for us to participate, Mr. Smith said.
Coleman Guimond, Kiwanis Club member of Massena, estimated that through the years the club and its sponsors have given out close to 80,000 trees. The goal of Kiwanis Club is to change the world one child and one community at a time, Mr. Guimond said. This Arbor Day tradition we have is so great because it is on the mark with both children and the community.
Massena Electric Superintendent Andy McMahon said, We are trying to raise awareness of Arbor Day because it is such an investment in the future. Going forward these trees will beautify our community and clean the air we breathe.
Superintendent of Schools Roger Clough II expressed his support for the program.
I am appreciative that Massena Electric and SeaComm sponsor such an event. I would like to thank the Kiwanis Club for presenting to our second graders and for demonstrating just how important trees are for our community, he noted.