Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Celebration of Trees

The Long Hill Estate Authority, The City of Middletown Urban Forestry Commission, and The Rockfall Foundation are collaborating to replace lost and damaged trees at the Wadsworth Mansion and the Wadsworth Arboretum from the 2011 storms that ravaged Connecticut. On Thursday, April 26, 2012, from 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. the Wadsworth Mansion will host a 'A Celebration of Trees', a fundraiser for the purpose of purchasing and planting trees at the two Wadsworth Legacy properties. Following a wine reception, Ted Esselstyn, co-founder of City Bench, will speak about his company, which recycles city trees from all over Connecticut into museum-quality furniture. Wood from the Wadsworth Mansion at Long Hill has been used in his furniture. A piece of his work has been donated for a raffle at the event. Admission is $30.00 per person and reservations can be made by calling 860 347 1064.

Storms Irene and Alfred left a trail of destruction throughout Middletown in 2011. The Wadsworth/Kerste deBoer Arboretum suffered damage or loss to over 20% of its historic trees. City Arborist Dana Whitney estimated the two storms did more than $128,000 in damage to trees in the arboretum. The Wadsworth Mansion at Long Hill incurred thousands of dollars in lost trees, including 100-year-old oaks and pines.

The Wadsworth Legacy Tree Restoration Fund has been created to replant trees lost at these two historic landscape properties. Donors can select a tree from planting lists for either property and dedicate it to an individual or organization or they can make a general purpose donation. "We're really excited about the donation of trees," Jane Harris, chairwoman of the Urban Forestry Commission said. "We're planning it as about a 5-year program. We don't want to plant 100 trees at once and then have a bad summer drought and lose them all." Harris said the commission prefers to plant native species so they last through cold winters and hot summers and are accepted by area wildlife.

Information will be available at the Wadsworth Mansion by calling (860) 347-1064 or visiting

If the photo above looks familiar to you, it might be that you have seen this lovely piece of CityBench furniture at Bradley Airport. Don't miss your chance to enter the raffle and win one of these stunning, one-of-a-kind pieces.  The fascinating story and work of CityBench can be seen at their website:

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