By Leigh Munsil
Arlington, TX (January 21, 2011)- Seven months after planting the first Super Bowl XLV-related tree on a hot day in June, volunteers, league representatives and local officials gathered again Friday morning to plant hundreds more – and to celebrate the NFL’s environmental efforts in North Texas.
Participants in the Super Grow XLV program planted more than 6,500 trees in area cities. The effort is an attempt to minimize the Super Bowl’s impact on the local environment. Seedlings were given to thousands of schoolchildren. Twelve of the Super Bowl XLV host communities coordinated tree plantings. NFL environmental director Jack Groh said North Texas’s environmental initiatives have been the largest in the history of the Super Bowl.
“I told Jack when he came to Texas we’d do it bigger and we’d do it better,” said Janette Monear, executive director of the Texas Trees Foundation. “And we did.” Addison, Arlington, Dallas, Denton, Farmers Branch , Fort Worth, Frisco, Grapevine, Irving , Lewisville , Plano and Richardson participated in the program. Their combined efforts made Super Grow XLV a success, Monear said.
Super Grow has allowed Arlington to renew its commitment to growing its urban forest, Mayor Robert Cluck said. “There are so many advantages to having the Super Bowl in your town … and one of the big ones is the environmental program,” Cluck said. “There’s nothing more important to me, and it should be to you, to grow our tree population.”
Friday’s tree planting in Arlington was the largest single tree planting of the program. Volunteers planted 45 trees in the Dr. Robert Cluck Linear Park east of Cowboys Stadium and 355 trees on traffic medians, school campuses, golf courses and other public areas in Arlington. Cluck and others mentioned the city’s hopes of bringing the Super Bowl back to North Texas in five years, but Groh jokingly told them to keep their focus on the task at hand.
“Everyone keeps talking about coming back,” he said. “Can we at least just play this game first?”
The Dallas Morning News- Arlington tree-planting effort biggest in Super Bowl history
Texas Trees Foundation
Super Grow XLV