MEDIA ADVISORY: JBER to celebrate Arbor Day May 20 and 31

  • Published
  • 673ABW/PA

Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson will host an Arbor Day event at Aurora Elementary School May 20, 2024, at 10:30 a.m., and a second event at the Soldier Centered Medical Home at 3 p.m., May 31.

In 1872, J. Sterling Morton proposed to the Nebraska Board of Agriculture that a special day be set aside for the planting of trees. Arbor Day is now observed throughout the nation and the world, acknowledging the value of trees to reduce soil erosion, moderate soil and water temperature, clean pollutants from air, soil, and water, produce oxygen, and provide habitat for wildlife.

This marks JBER’s 29th year designated as a Tree City, USA for the installation’s efforts in 2023. Communities are required to have an effective urban forestry plan; establish a tree care ordnance; plant and care for trees; and proclaim and observe Arbor Day in order to be designated a Tree City, USA.

The May 20 Arbor Day celebration will begin with remarks from Cayley Elsik, JBER natural resource manager, followed by student presentations and reading of the Proclamation by U.S. Air Force Col. Jeremy Oldham, 673d Civil Engineer Group commander.

At the conclusion of the ceremony, students will plant two paper birch trees on school grounds.

The May 31 celebration will kick-off with remarks from Elsik, along with scout presentations and a reading of the Proclamation by U.S. Army Col. James Watts, Medical Department Activity-Alaska commander, and will conclude with the planting of two white spruce trees.

Media outlets interested in covering the Arbor Day celebrations must RSVP no later than 5 p.m., the day before to ensure base access and PA escort to the event. Please provide the name of the reporter, media outlet and contact number by sending an e-mail to or call 907-551-8995.