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Planting project: Escanaba Junior, Senior High replants memorial trees

September 19, 2012
By Jason Raiche - staff writer ( , Daily Press

ESCANABA - Several memorial trees will be replanted in front of the Escanaba Junior and Senior High School building throughout the week - the final phase of the high school's renovation project. The replanting will also coincide with the opening event for the Esky150 Trees project - a part of the Escanaba Sesquicentennial in 2013.

According to Escanaba High School Principal Doug Leisenring, approximately 20 memorial trees are being replanted in front of the junior and senior high school facility along South Lincoln Road. Though some of the memorial trees were not removed, others had to be cut down due to the high school's renovation project. The trees will be replanted using bond money.

"When the high school renovation project was started in June 2010, several of the EHS memorial trees had to be removed for the new driveway configuration in the front of the high school," explained Leisenring. "The school district is replacing those trees with a combination of serviceberry and crabapple trees that will line the new front sidewalks of the high school."

Article Photos

Amy Cseter, Escanaba Area Schools director of operations, Jake Eastin, EAHS student, Dave Gafner, horticulturist and 150 organization member, Charlie Becker, Plum Creek resource supervisor, Sarah Maeder and Yamaly Aznar, EAHS students, Marilyn Kinsey, Escanaba 150 trees project coordinator, and Jeremy Manson, EAHS student pose in front of trees that will be replanted at the high school.

The trees in memory of the following people are being replanted: Dave Bakula, John Boerschinger, Tom Boyle, Derek Carlson, Suzanne Chenier, Brian Cooper, Jeannine Landry Cote, Michael Crawford, Paul DeMay, Dean Derouin, Robert Francis, Kim Freeland, Joe Frossard, Jerame Harrington, Ron Jaeger, Jay Johnson, Jim Lindstrom, Charles Livermore, Darren Mason, Doug McEchern, Robert Morin, Tim Nault, Greg Rose, Gene Timmer, Pat Tobin, and the Class of 1944 in honor of their lost classmates. Trees planted in memory of Tom Johnson, Wally Nye, Cherie Schwichtenberg and Paul Whitman were not touched and remain in their original locations.

The replanting also coincides with approximately 30 trees being planted throughout the district - 20 at the high school campus and 10 at the Escanaba Upper Elementary School through a partnership with the Esky150 Committee.

"As part of our sesquicentennial next year, their goal is ... to have 150 trees planted on the different entrance ways into Escanaba, but also around the schools," said Leisenring.

He noted that the Esky150 Trees are being funded through a $5,000 grant from the Plum Creek Timber Company Foundation. Two larger landscape trees are also being funded through donations as part of the Esky150 project. Jeanine Dagenais and Harry and Sandy Krebs are donating a Burr oak at the high school in honor of the marriage of John and Patt Besse. The Class of 1976 has donated a white oak at the Upper Elementary School.

Leisenring said PhD horticulturist Dr. Dave Gafner has been helping with the school's landscape plans and tree selections.

"He's got a really nice long-term plan for the high school to plant a wide variety of Michigan foliage and trees and hedges around the facility," said Leisenring.

He also said the numerous trees will be beneficial to biology classes who study a unit on tree identification.

"I think the kids will appreciate it and I think it'll make the site look better, but also it's really going to be helpful for our biology classes, because there's a pretty significant unit the kids have in biology where they do tree identification," said Leisenring. "It would sure be nice if we could do a lot of that right on our campus."

Students in the biology and environmental science classes are assisting in soil preparation and tree planting throughout this week.

Family and friends of the two large donated trees and the memorial trees being replanted are invited to attend a special planting and small ceremony scheduled for Sept. 22 at 10 a.m. beginning at the high school on South Lincoln Road and then at approximately 10:45 a.m. at the Upper Elementary School at 1500 Ludington St.

For more information, contact Leisenring at 786-6521 or Esky150 Trees project coordinator Marilyn Kinsey by calling 786-2401 or by email at Additional information is available by visiting where donations may be made to fund Sesquicentennial Celebration events or additional tree plantings in 2013.



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