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Shade Tree Beautification Committee
The Ipswich Shade Tree and Beautification Committee is an entirely volunteer effort, made up of concerned Ipswich residents, landscape professionals, Garden Club members and two selectmen who recommend, recognize, and implement actions that beautify and enhance the town of Ipswich and its quality of life.
Members will seek and monitor local business support for the planting and maintaining of roadway islands, promote appropriate planting areas and tree planting throughout the town as well as organize town-wide cleanups. The committee will work closely with the Town Manager, Department of Public Works, Planning Department, Forestry Department, Board of Selectmen, and Garden Clubs to achieve special initiatives.
The Ipswich Shade Tree and Beautification Committee usually meets the third Wednesday of every month at 7:00p.m.
Pat Beirne, Pat Flanagan, Paula Jones, Barbara Monahan, Pat McNally (selectman), Charlie Surpitski (selectman), and Ann Wright.
The Adapt An Island Program is a major initiative of the Committee. It is now entering its 6th year. This program has greatly enhanced the beauty of the town and has become a model for other nearby communities. Through an application process, coordinated through the town’s DPW department, local businesses and community organizations sponsor and maintain a traffic island three seasons of the year. Sponsorships are renewed each spring. The Committee has adopted a standardized sign that sponsors may place in their island. The Committee also sponsors hanging flower baskets in the downtown business area and maintains the 24 large planters along the Riverwalk.
The Old Elm Tree Wood Project was initiated when the town’s beloved 250-year-old elm tree on the corner of East Street and County Street died and had to be cut down in July 2012. The Old Elm Tree Wood Project was created to use the wood from the tree to create useful objects and works of art that will memorialize the tree and benefit the town. Ideas include making a podium (for annual town meetings), benches, tables, works of art, and useful items such as clocks, bowls, etc. Large cross sections of the tree have been cut and preserved for a future “tree ring dating project”. Also large parts of the tree trunk and branches have been tested for disease and stored for woodworking projects.
The Committee will review all applications giving priority to those projects that benefit the town and help memorialize the tree and create fundraising options to support the “Tree Ring Project” and “The Tree Fund” to help preserve Ipswich’s trees. Applications should be submitted to the DPW department at the town hall. The wood is distributed to approved applicants by the town’s DPW department.
The Committee organizes the Town Wide Cleanup in the spring and fall. Volunteers clear trash in the major entrance roadways into town, the downtown business area, the Hammett Street parking lot, the railroad station, Bialek Park, and the Town Wharf.
The Committee reviews the town’s Streetscape projects and their impact on trees. Working closely with the town arborist and other town committees, the Committee is a strong advocate for the preservation and protection of the town’s shade trees.