City of Montevallo celebrates Arbor Day 2012

Members of the Montevallo Arbor Board from left, front row, Linda Cicero, Kathy Weese, Brownie Gillespie and Joan Pickett; back row, Bill Legg, Mayor Ben McCrory and Herschel Hale. (Contributed)

By CATHERINE LEGG / Community Columnist

An estimated 400 people came out early on Saturday, Feb. 25, to Montevallo’s 20th annual Arbor Day celebration. They were rewarded with free trees, shrubs, mulch, pine bark, informational brochures and advice given by Arbor Board members, master gardeners and tree expert Randy Glover.

“Our annual Arbor Day was another great success,” said Herschel Hale, chair of the sponsoring Montevallo Arbor Board. “Words will not describe how proud I am of all the many wonderful volunteers and the fantastic support we get from the community year after year. We are already looking forward to next year’s event.”

The Arbor Day celebration supports Montevallo’s Tree City program, and is truly a community event.

A quick glance around the park building and the grounds revealed folks from almost every organization in town working together and enjoying themselves.

More than 1,500 tree seedlings were given away, including Maples, Bald Cypresses, Pines, Fringe Trees, Dogwoods, Oaks and others.

Potted trees were awarded as door prizes during the scheduled drawings.

All of the trees, shrubs and various gardening supplies had been donated by Cedar Creek Nursery, Green Valley Nursery, the Forestry Commission, Sims Bark, Scott Company and the City of Montevallo.

Among the many agencies represented were the local Civitan Club, Montevallo High School FFA, Vallo-Cycle, Tim Tingle’s carvings, Girl Scouts, Montevallo Trails, The Living River Retreat, Don Whitten’s birdhouses and Dave Chanslor’s wood-turning art.

Arbor Board members, in addition to Hale, are Brownye Gillespie, Joan Pickett, Kathy Weese, Bill Legg, John McKinnon, Melinda Nix, Linda Cicero, Kevin Thornthwaite and Rusty Nix.

A follow-up of the morning’s event was the dedication of a Red Maple tree planted in Orr Park in memory of Homer Richardson, a long-time Montevallo resident who was revered by everyone who knew him.

The dedication was made through the efforts of John Stephens of Cedar Creek Nursery, the Arbor Board and the Montevallo Evening Garden Club.

Many of those in attendance noted the fine character of Richardson.

“Homer Richardson was a good man,” said Stephens. “He was a great friend and a Christian who lived by the Bible; going about quietly doing good things for others.”

For information about the 2013 Arbor Day celebration, call Herschel Hale at 665-2032 or contact him by email at

Catherine Legg can be reached at