Great Parks Foundation’s Recognition Program provides individuals and organizations the opportunity to honor family or friends, or commemorate a special event by purchasing a tree or bench at Great Parks of Hamilton County.
With a contribution of $800, Great Parks Foundation will plant a commemorative tree at any Great Park*. This includes the tree, a personalized plaque, as well as maintenance of the tree (fertilizing, mulching, pruning, etc.) and plaque for ten years. After the tree is planted, a map of the planting location will be sent to you. If you wish, a card of acknowledgement can be sent to the honoree’s family letting them know that their loved one has been honored. Additional plantings or decorations at tree sites are not permitted by donors, honorees, or their friends or family.
You may make your contribution at any time however trees will be planted only in the fall. To have your tree planted this calendar year, please complete your contribution by October 1. After you select a Great Park for your planting, you are welcome to suggest a type of tree and/or planting location, but the final decision will be made by Great Parks Landscape Department. Tree selection and planting locations are chosen based on species, topography, soil condition, light exposure, mature plant size and appropriateness for placement. These factors are determined by Great Parks Landscape Department to ensure that your commemorative planting will continue to thrive for many years to come.
Great Parks Foundation will warranty the tree for ten years. The tree or plaque will be repaired or replaced as necessary within these ten years. The tree will receive reasonable care and attention for the duration of its lifespan. Great Parks of Hamilton County reserves the right to relocate or replace with comparable a tree due to capital construction, landscape redesign or other extenuating circumstances. During the ten year warranty period, Great Parks’ staff will contact the donor or honoree at the last known address, before relocation or replacement should such need arise.
At all parks, except Glenwood Gardens and Fernbank Park, a durable plaque will be installed by Great Parks Landscape Department underneath the tree, inscribed with the name of the tree species and “Planting in Honor of” or “Planting in Memory of,” followed by the honoree’s name. The Legacy Garden at Glenwood Gardens has large plaques listing honorees with corresponding tree locations. Fernbank Park has a mounted bronze tree plaque with engraved leaves listing the honorees and the tree identification number.
*Great Parks conservation areas, Kroger Hills, Newberry Wildlife Sanctuary, Oak Glen Nature Preserve, and Richardson Forest Preserve, are excluded from the Recognition Program.
With a contribution of $800, you can adopt an existing bench. Where new benches are needed, you can adopt a new bench for $1,000. Benches are adopted for one ten-year term. At the end of that term, the donor has the first right to renew their adoption of the bench, or allow it to be adopted by others.
Contributions for existing benches will be used to refurbish and maintain benches. In recognition of the contribution, a plaque engraved with a personalized inscription is added to the bench. Inscriptions are limited to 4 lines, 20 characters per line (ALL CAPS). Great Parks Foundation retains the right of text approval in advance, as well as the right to disallow plaque inscriptions or references which are deemed unacceptable or inappropriate.
Contributions for new benches will be used to refurbish and maintain benches. Installation of new benches will typically be accomplished during the spring and fall, according to the park district’s schedule. No guarantee can be made that the bench will not be moved. During the ten year warranty period, Great Parks’ staff will contact the donor or honoree at the last known address, before relocation or replacement should such need arise. Additional plantings or decorations at bench sites are not permitted by contributors, their friends or family.
Steps to secure a tree or bench:
- Complete a Recognition Program contribution form available to print or process online on www.greatparksfoundation.org
- A letter will be mailed to the donor to acknowledge the contribution.
- After the tree is planted, or bench adopted/installed, a letter and map will be mailed to the donor and any honoree/family member designated on the contribution form. All maps for trees will be mailed between October 1 and December 15.
- Can I/we choose the specific location for a tree or bench? Donors and honorees are welcome to suggest a specific location for a tree or bench, however the final planting/installation location will be determined by Great Parks’ staff members.
- Can I/we choose a specific type of tree or bench? Donors and honorees are welcome to suggest a specific type of tree or style of bench, however Great Parks’ staff members will determine the tree or bench type depending on several factors including topography, light exposure, soil condition, and park design.
- When are trees planted? Trees are planted in the fall only. To have your tree planted this calendar year, please complete your contribution by October 1. After October 1, trees will be planted the following fall.
- When are new benches installed or plaques for adopted benches installed? Weather permitting, plaques or new benches can be installed year-round.
- Can I/we bury a bio urn or ashes with a tree? Bio urns, ashes, and other objects may not be buried with a tree as they will affect the health of the tree. Additional plantings or decorations at tree sites are not permitted by donors, honorees, or their friends or family.
- Can I/we be present for the planting or installation? Due to scheduling, we are not able to coordinate guests being present at tree plantings or bench installations. You will be sent a letter and map, so that you can locate the tree/bench after it is planted/installed.
- How will I/we know where our tree or bench is planted or installed? The donor will be mailed a letter and map of the location. The honoree or a family member will also be notified if this information is provided on the contribution form.
- How do I make the necessary contribution? Go online to greatparksfoundation.org to pay with a credit card or print a Recognition Program Contribution Mail-In Form to mail with a check.
A portion of each contribution will be applied to the Foundation’s ongoing efforts to support the Great Parks of Hamilton County. Contributions to the Recognition Program are tax deductible to the full extent of the law.