May 24, 2009
Even before they were supposed to start, volunteers outside the courthouse on the square in Noblesville were handing out free Redbud trees to community members who were already lined up ready to take advantage of the offer through Keep Noblesville Beautiful. The event was a great start to the welcome warmer weather and a positive indication of public support and interest in improving the look and nature of the community.
For Cindy Haas with KNB, seeing so many people so early in the day outside their tent was wonderful.
"I love seeing this line," she said of those waiting for a free tree as well as tips on how to plant and care for it. "I'm very proud of the community response. They want this."
Those picking up their trees could also enter a raffle for a more mature 2 ½ inch diameter Sun Valley Maple tree. Noblesville resident and tree enthusiast Mary Sue Rowland was selected at random as winner.
Joining the effort were members of the Hamilton County Master Gardeners who demonstrated the proper way to separate Hosta plants and then gave cuttings away to those also waiting in line. They also provided proper planting instructions as well as tips on care. Members pointed out using Friday's celebration of Arbor Day to get out into the community was one way to raise awareness of their organization and their upcoming annual plant sale and iris dig from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 17 at the Hamilton County 4-H Grounds, 2003 Pleasant Street in Noblesville.
Sharing smiles in the morning sun, the organizations work in their own ways to make the area increasingly enjoyable to look at.
Haas pointed out the biggest challenge KNB has faced is getting their name and what they do out to the public they wish to help. Progress is being made as she pointed out several success stories where members and other volunteers have cleaned up residential lots and engaged neighborhoods in ways to help spruce up their streets.
"We want people to understand we help clean up neighborhoods," she said. "We knock on doors able to offer free plants, mulch from the city; we cut down brush and act as tree stewards. We help to improve the area."
KNB works with the city to improve neighborhoods and fills a vital role of community involvement in areas that need attention. Haas said programs would continue despite losing Firestone locally as a major sponsor of the group and efforts were ongoing to find funding sources.
"We want to transform one block at a time," she said.
KNB has several events upcoming including blitzing several Noblesville neighborhoods with cleanup and beautification projects as well as clean up events along the White River.
Information on the group and upcoming events can be found
at www.keepnoblesvillebeautiful.org. Information on the Hamilton
County Master Gardeners can be found at www.hcmga.org.