More than 60 cyclists took part in the 2010 STIHL Tour des Trees, which is claimed to be America’s largest fundraiser for tree research. The event raised over $365,000 so far during this year’s tour to benefit the Tree Research and Education Endowment (TREE) Fund.
The weeklong cycling event, which traveled through Northern Illinois, launched from Chicago’s Millennium Park on July 18 with a performance by Rolling Stone keyboardist Chuck Leavell.
A noted conservationist, Leavell also performed a benefit concert the night before the opening ceremony, with proceeds benefitting the TREE Fund and the American Forest Foundation.
“Tree care professionals use our products every day to maintain the health of trees, and we’re proud to support tree research that benefits their work,” said Roger Phelps of STIHL Inc., which has sponsored the Tour for 10 years.
“With the money raised from the Tour, we can continue to fund the research needed to maintain and care for our urban forests,” said Janet Bornancin, executive director of the TREE Fund.
Since its inception in 1992, the Tour has generated more than $4.8 million and has funded a host of diverse projects to address invasive pests, urban planting challenges, tree biomechanics and worker safety.
The TREE Fund has supported research that has led to developments in:
- Understanding air pollution reduction and carbon sequestration by trees
- Quantifying the costs and benefits of urban trees
- Improving conditions for tree growth in difficult sites
- Strategies to manage diseases and pests that affect urban trees
Sponsors of the 2010 STIHL Tour des Trees included Title Sponsor STIHL Inc., Crown Sponsor Bartlett Tree Experts, TREE Fund Partners Asplundh Tree Expert Co. and KASK America, Educational Programming Sponsor The Davey Tree Expert Company, Gold Leaf Sponsors Ameren, Rainbow Tree Care Scientific Advancements and Wright Tree Service, Inc.
Donations to support the STIHL Tour des Trees will continue to be accepted through December 31, says STIHL.
For more information, you can visit www.treefund.org.