Arbor Day in Carthage will take on a new look and new meaning with a revamped program and different activities.

Arbor Day in Carthage will take on a new look and new meaning with a revamped program and different activities.

This year’s Arbor Day celebration will kick off at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 5 at Carthage’s Central Park.

Past Arbor Days have included a short ceremony with a proclamation, signed by the Carthage Mayor, and the planting of a tree at a park or public place.

The proclamation is still a part of this year’s schedule, but the rest of it is completely new and geared toward educating children about trees, according to Carthage Parks Director Alan Bull.

“We have a more active Tree Board this year than we have in the past and they wanted to do more than just plant a tree,” Bull said. “Jon Skinner (Missouri Department of Conservation Urban Forester) and others will be there and the emphasis is on education, mainly toward kids.”

Bull said the Carthage Tree Board is partnering with the Carthage Public Library for the event.

It will start at Central Park with tree tours of the park. Skinner and Bull will lead the tours and show people the different tree species that make up the diverse tree population of the park.

“I always thought there were mostly sugar maples out there,” Bull said. “I was surprised when Jon started showing me the number of different species in the park.”

Jennifer Seaton and Deb Haynes, with the Carthage Public Library, said the Library will host a 30-minute story time with stories having to do with trees.

The Library will also hand out fliers about trees and pinecone bird feeder kits.

These kits allow children to coat a pinecone with peanut butter and stick birdseed to the peanut butter and hang them out for the birds.

Haynes said they would also have coloring sheets, puzzles and other fun things for kids.

“And especially for people who haven’t been in the library before,” Haynes said, “I’ll take them on a short tour of the library and show them what we have in our new building.”

Seaton said the library is excited to partner with the tree board on this event.

“It’s exciting when we have the opportunity to collaborate with another city entity and help promote Carthage’s parks and show what the library has to offer,” Seaton said.

For more details, call the parks department at 237-7035.