No, it’s not some weird group of people that live in trees here in Los Angeles because they cannot afford the outrageous real estate in town. Rather, it is an incredible 45 acre area for hiking and mountain biking right in the in the center of Los Angeles that does more than just look pretty. Some people instantly think of Griffith Park when they think about getting “outdoors”, but I think of the TreePeople at Coldwater Canyon Park.
The park started life as the mountain patrol headquarters for the LA Fire Department in 1923, and in 1974 TreePeople Founder and President Andy Lipkis discovered the area and got the city to allow TreePeople to start planting seedlings.
You see, TreePeople is not just a hiking area…they plant and grow trees for all of Los Angeles, participating in plantings in all areas of the city. If you become a member of TreePeople, you even get 4 trees to plant in your own yard. They put on forestry workshops, give guided hikes, have many volunteer opportunities and even put on plays in their small garden ampitheatre. In January and February they distribute free fruit trees to help combat hunger here in Los Angeles.
From their site:
“TreePeople’s mission is to inspire the people of Los Angeles to take personal responsibility for the urban forest – educating, training and supporting them as they plant and care for trees and improve the neighborhoods in which they live, learn, work and play.
TreePeople’s mission reaches beyond the simple act of planting a tree. Our K-12 education programs raise environmental awareness and enrich academic lessons by teaching valuable life skills.
Our forestry programs restore watersheds and fragile habitats. This work also brings neighbors together, revitalizes inner-city communities, cools and greens campuses, and address serious urban issues including water and energy conservation, flood prevention and stormwater pollution.
Our T.R.E.E.S. project is changing the nation’s approach to urban watershed management, motivating other cities to adopt “best management practices”and follow our lead.
TreePeople relies on volunteers like you to organize plantings on school campuses, city streets, and in parks and wilderness areas. Volunteers help grow seedlings in our nursery and raise money to fund our programs.”
They are a really great organization that really cares about the environment and the impact we have on it. Through their educational activities to their free tree programs, they are making a difference both here in the city and nationwide. So if you are a native Angeleno or you happen to be here visiting, check out the TreePeople. You wont be disappointed and I promise you will want to come back and do more exploring.
technorati tags:tree environment green hiking
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