Summit County tree-planting initiative seeks volunteers |

Summit County tree-planting initiative seeks volunteers

SUMMIT COUNTY – To raise funds and reforest an area already decimated by the pine-beetle epidemic, Bristlecone Health Services is set to plant 1,800 tree seedlings throughout Summit County. Volunteers are now being sought to help with the on-going reforestation effort.

The inaugural Legacy Forest campaign is a program in which trees have been purchased by locals as a fundraising effort through the Bristlecone Foundation. The program’s aim is to help Bristlecone Health Services provide in-home healthcare, counseling and end-of-life planning throughout the county.

“The first planting day is scheduled for May 15, followed by many additional volunteer planting opportunities,” said Lori O’Bryan, who’s a board member and marketing chair for the Bristlecone Foundation. (NOTE: Today’s planting has been canceled due to snow.) “On June 5, all Legacy Forest volunteers are invited to a BBQ and entertainment at the Dillon Marina.”

O’Bryan added that a lot of interest has been generated so far for the new program.

“It just keeps growing,” she said. “Next year, it will be even better.”

Planting days are scheduled throughout the summer, and numerous volunteers will be needed for the work. Participants should bring work gloves, a hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, sturdy footwear and a filled water bottle. All other tools and materials will be provided at each location.

“It’s a two-fold situation,” O’Bryan said. “Not only does it benefit Bristlecone services throughout Summit County, it helps with reforestation too. The loss of the trees has been great because of the pine beetles.”

According to Bristlecone Foundation director Åsa Armstrong, a little more than $16,000 has been raised so far for hospice and home health care.

“One-hundred percent goes back to patient care services,” Armstrong said. “All our expenses are underwritten by our sponsors, so all the funds from the Legacy Forest (campaign) can be allocated to patient care service in Summit County. … We do have a lot of people using our services.”

Bristlecone Health Services is the only provider of hospice and home healthcare in Summit County. Its team of health care professionals helps patients and families through “the unique physical, emotional and spiritual challenges faced during any illness.” Patient ages range from newborns to the elderly.

“They not only help the terminally ill, but the recovering patients living at home,” O’Bryan said. “It’s nice to have that, to help county residents.”

To learn more about the Legacy Forest campaign, call or e-mail Åsa Armstrong at (970) 668-8444, For more information about the Bristlecone Foundation, visit

Caitlin Row can be reached at (970) 668-4633 or at

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