“Through GreenCare for Troops, professional lawn and landscape volunteers provide the gift of a well-maintained lawn and yard that provides physical, mental health and environmental benefits to military families serving our country. Proceeds from this terrific concert helps make those services possible.”
More than 30 professional volunteers teamed up at Helen Simpson Park in Cleveland’s Buckeye neighborhood to provide a much-needed facelift to enhance the aesthetic appearance, vibrancy, environmental impact and accessibility to this important community gathering space.
The project – valued at $25,000 – revitalized the 32,000 sq. ft. park that serves as a vibrant community gathering space. The park is named after Helen Simpson, a neighborhood resident and pioneer in Cleveland television. She was a manager of advertising, promotion and publicity at local NBC affiliate, who was tragically murdered in 1972 on her way home from work. The case has never been solved.
“Helen Simpson Park is vital to this highly populated community, but over the years it had fallen into disarray,” said Cindy Code, executive director of Project EverGreen. “With the expertise and commitment of our dedicated volunteers, the park’s trees, plants and grass received much needed pruning and nutrition to enhance their health and vitality. The result is a vibrant, safe park that serves as the lungs of the city.”
Presenting sponsors Project EverGreen and the Ohio Landscape Association and a team of local green industry volunteers worked together to complete a project that included:
- Pruning and shaping existing trees; removing dead limbs and branches
- Removing old turf and top dressing and reseeding to prevent erosion
- Deep edging the park’s planting beds and adding new soil and mulch
- Installing a selection of new trees and shrubs to increase carbon sequestration
- Adding turf nutrition and weed management applications
- Creating new attractive entryways to the park
“We are thrilled to see these improvements at our Helen Simpson Park,” said Deborah Gray, councilwoman Ward 4 City of Cleveland. “We’re so appreciative of the support shown to this neighborhood and the tremendous work completed to restore this beautiful park.”
Lead volunteers Yardmaster, Turf Pride Lawn Care and Paradise Landscapes provided crews to handle the renovation and planting duties. In-kind sponsors for the project included Advanced Turf Solutions, Bartlett Tree Co., Brightview, Buyansky Outdoor Supply, City of Cleveland Department of Parks, Recreation and Properties, John Deere, Klyn Nurseries, Lake County Nursery, Leppo Rents/Bobcat, SiteOne Landscape Supply, The Davey Tree Expert Company, and Weed Man.
“We were so happy that Project Evergreen asked the Ohio Landscape Association to be their partner on this project at Helen Simpson Park,” said Sandy Munley, executive director of the Ohio Landscape Association. “Public green spaces are such an important part of communities. They help to promote physical and mental health and make the surrounding areas a desirable place to live and play. Our members recognize the importance of giving back and jumped at the chance to provide their expertise and resources to this important project.”
Parks, lawns, landscapes and maintained green spaces help to mitigate temperature increases in communities and significantly reduce energy use and cooling costs. Project EverGreen’s GreenCare for Communities initiative has made a significant impact. Since 2008, Project EverGreen and its partners have renovated community parks and public green spaces totaling more than 200 million square feet of living green space.
Through its nationwide base of professional volunteers, Project EverGreen has connected people, plants and their communities to maximize the health of grass, plants and trees, which in turn sequesters carbon and cleans the air. The initiative supports healthy green spaces in neighborhoods and cities, enabling maintained green spaces to function as the lungs of the city and offsetting the negative effects of a warming environment.