DUNDEE, Mich. - A local service organization hopes to make up for some of the damage to community caused when tornadoes touched down in early June.
"Plant a Tree for Dundee" was started by the Dundee Area Rotary as a community service project to help homeowners who lost trees to the tornadoes, said Rotarian Tammy Phillips, who is co-chairman of the program.
The Rotary, which hopes to raise $10,000 to match a state grant, is accepting applications for a tree giveaway drawing at 1 p.m. Sept. 30 at the Old Mill Museum in Dundee.
The applications can be obtained at local businesses, the Dundee, Ida, and Petersburg branches of the Monroe County Library System, or at http://tinyurl.com/tree-application.
"The program is open to anyone who lost trees and has a Dundee or Petersburg address," Mrs. Phillips said. "The idea is to get trees back into the area."
Officials estimate that the tornadoes did more than $8 million in damage to homes and businesses, and the village incurred more than $800,000 in cleanup costs.
"Our village alone lost 1,600, trees," she said.
Applications must be submitted before Sept. 15 to be eligible for the drawing on Sept. 30.
Winners will be notified by phone.
However, the Rotary hopes to secure enough funding to hold additional giveaways of trees, for planting next spring and fall.
The Carleton Rotary has pledged $5,000 for the tree planting program in a challenge to the Dundee Area Rotary to raise an equal amount.
Mrs. Phillips said that would allow the tree planting project to qualify for a $10,000 grant from the Michigan Forestry Department.
Donations for the program to assist the Rotary in the project can be made at any Monroe Bank and Trust branch or by payment to the "Tree Project" in care of the Dundee Area Rotary, P.O. Box 178, Dundee, 48131.
- Mark Reiter