By NICOLE DONSKAYA
The La Mesa Park & Recreation Foundation brought the community together for an Earth Day celebration on November 6th at their Parks Appreciation Day event. Community groups, local families, and civic leaders from the city, county, and state gathered at MacArthur Park to recognize the importance of parks and environmental sustainability.
The event commenced with a park cleanup in the morning, where attendees of all ages participated in picking up trash, assessing agriculture work, trimming shrubs, and gardening. After the cleanup, attendees enjoyed an Earth Day Fair with family-friendly activities from over 20 vendors offering interactive lessons on environmental sustainability such as how to reuse, reduce, and recycle.
Arborist Kurt Peacock led a tree planting presentation and gave the attendees helpful tips as they beautified one of La Mesa’s newest community parks with trees and greenery. “If you plant it correctly and water it consistently,” Peacock explained, “then your tree will live up to its potential.”
Representatives from County Supervisor Joel Anderson’s office planted a tree of their own and awarded the Foundation’s Board of Directors a Certificate of Recognition.
“This event is a great example of how citizens can come together to make a positive impact in our community and the health of our environment,” Anderson stated. “Thank you to the La Mesa Park and Recreation Foundation for creating spaces that foster pride in La Mesa.”
Laurie MacDonald, president of the La Mesa Park and Recreation Foundation, recalled how “grateful and happy” she was to receive the recognition. “It is through our efforts and our fundraising that these events can happen,” she said.
The Foundation hosted Parks Appreciation Day with the purpose of bringing the community together after a year and a half of hardship. It also presented a great opportunity to show off MacArthur Park’s new garden, a special project that the Foundation raised over $60,000 for during the pandemic.
While MacArthur Park is still a work in progress, this event was a big step toward the Foundation’s final vision: providing a place for children and families to connect with nature and be together.
“Getting people there and getting it cleaned up is really important to the community,” MacDonald commented.
For more information on the La Mesa Park and Recreation Foundation and their future events, visit www.lamesaparks.org.
— Nicole Donskaya is a legislative intern for Supervisor Joel Anderson’s office.