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Community tree planting event happening this weekend

Rotary Forest tree planting is in its 11th year
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Last year's Rotary Forest tree planting event. GuelphToday file photo

The 11th annual Rotary Forest community tree planting event will take place this Saturday at the 40-hectare area across from the Guelph Lake Nature Centre.

The event is a partnership between Rotary Club of Guelph, the Grand River Conservation Authority and the Grand River Conservation Foundation.

The Rotary Forest project’s ultimate goal is to increase the canopy cover in the City of Guelph and surrounding area by planting 60,000 trees by 2020.

Rotary invites you to wear your boots and learn how to plant a tree while having fun with your neighbours, family and friends. Shovels will be provided.

The event takes place from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Participants are asked to park at Lakeside Church on Conservation Road and be shuttled to the site.

"This year we will be creating a beautiful wildflower meadow for pollinators as well as planting trees and shrubs. We are planting a higher percentage of deciduous trees this year like oaks, maples, and hickories as well as shrub species like chokeberry, ninebark and serviceberry which increase diversity and provide additional food sources for birds and wildlife," said a news release on the event.

The event happens rain or shine.

A free shuttle bus from downtown Guelph Central Station, platform 15, will leave every hour on the hour starting at 9am to 1pm with a stop at the corner of Woodlawn and Victoria Roads at 15 minutes past the hour. Refreshments and food are available for purchase.

There will also be displays from the Biobus, Wild Ontario with birds of prey and musical entertainment by Terry Van Dreumel.