Across the Puget Sound this fall, more than 2,200 volunteers converged at area parks and green spaces to celebrate Green City Days. Now boasting nine cities in the Green City Partnerships—Seattle, Redmond, Kirkland, Everett, Tukwila, Snoqualmie, Kent, Puyallup and Tacoma—these annual event connects community members across all age, ethnic and economic backgrounds for a common goal: helping to keep our forested parks and green spaces environmentally healthy. Combined, these cities have a goal to restore 9,000 acres of forested parks and natural areas while building community through stewardship.
Cumulatively, these events planted more than 15,000 native plants. This work was completed by 2,221 volunteers who clocked a combined total of 6,663 volunteer service hours. Overall this year, participation was up 47% and plantings increased 120%! Volunteers came from all over the region and represented high school Key Clubs, elementary school students, area colleges and businesses including REI, Boeing, HSBC, CLIF Bar, Patagonia, and Pacifica Law among others.
Volunteers expressed many positive experiences, “A fun and very rewarding morning. Times like this I am so proud to live in this community,” said a Green Everett Volunteer. One Green Kent Volunteer commented, “It pulls me into nature while educating me about what I’m seeing, planting or pulling.”
Restored forested parks and natural areas mitigate urban flooding, help to clean air and water resources, provide home for wildlife and allow people to connect with nature.
Each Green City has partnered with Forterra to established a community-based restoration program that brings together local non-profits, community groups, city agencies, neighborhood leaders, and local businesses to support healthy urban green spaces for the future of our region.
Green Snoqualmie Day: The City of Snoqualmie hosted their first-ever Green Snoqualmie Day with the help of 60 community volunteers, the City of Snoqualmie, Forterra, and Mountains to Sound Greenway, more than 650 native plants were added to improve the forest health at Snoqualmie Point Park and Meadowbrook Slough.
Green Tukwila Day: The City of Tukwila hosted their first Green Tukwila Day with 44 community members removing invasive English Ivy and planting 135 native plants at Tukwila Park.
Green Tacoma Day: 300+ volunteers planted 190 native trees and shrubs, removed 3,350 square feet of invasive plants, and spread 15 cubic yards of mulch at 14 restoration sites.
Green Kent Day: 120 volunteers planted more than 900 native plants, creating a forested buffer between the Puget Power Trail and the Green River Natural Area.
Green Everett Day: A total of 143 community members planted 790 natives plants at Forest Park—that’s nearly double the volunteers who attended last year.
Green Redmond Day: Green Redmond day attracted 94 community members who planted 1,135 native plants at three local parks. This was almost 500 more plants than last year, all helping to ensure Perrigo Park, Viewpoint Open Space and Westside Park remain gems of the city.
Green Puyallup Day: Nearly 60 volunteers planted 100 trees and 40 native shrubs, while tackling stubborn invasive blackberry and spreading more than 10 cubic yards of mulch.
Green Seattle Day: Green Seattle Day attracted 1,258 volunteers, an increase of 300 participants from 2016. Even more astonishing was the 10,000 native trees and shrubs that were planted, representing an almost 60% increase over 2016. Volunteers worked at 22 different parks and achieved all of this success in only 3 hours.
Green Kirkland Day: 184 volunteers planted more than 1,225 native plants, removed invasive plants, and spread more than 18 cubic yards of mulch.