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Sunriver marks 35th year as ‘Tree City USA’


Sunriver has been honored by the American Arbor Day Foundation for its 35th anniversary as a “Tree City USA.”

Sunriver is the oldest Tree City USA community east of the Cascades, and one of 56 in the state. In Oregon, only Eugene (36 years), Portland (37 years) and Salem (38 years) have received this designation longer than Sunriver. Across the region, other tree cities include Sisters, Redmond and Madras.

“Well-managed community trees suggest that residents lead healthy lives, have time to interact with nature and, by association, with each other,” said Katy Lompa, Oregon Department of Forestry Community Assistant Forester.

“When we consider trees as a marketing tool for Sunriver, it is the on-going cumulative effort that makes the difference. The message you send by doing right by your community trees is another way of ‘advertising’ that your organization does right by the people who live there, too,” added Lompa.

The Sunriver Owners Association (SROA) budgets more than $200,000 annually to maintain its forests. Management programs include ladder fuels reduction to reduce the threat of wildfire (and compliance with Oregon Senate Bill 360); removal of hazardous trees and those infested with mountain pine beetle.

“This award symbolizes the commitment our community has to its livability,” said Patti Gentiluomo, SROA’s Natural Resources director.

There are four criteria set by the Arbor Day Foundation that must be met to be considered for Tree City designation: spend at least $2 per person on trees; including within a community’s bylaws who is responsible for tree care; proclaiming Arbor Day; and having an advisory committee on trees.

“Healthy trees are among a handful of attributes that say community leadership and staff make good choices on behalf of the residents, and reflect a generosity of community spirit,” said Lompa.

For information about Sunriver’s forest management programs, contact Patti Gentiluomo, SROA Natural Resources Director at 541-593-1522 or email

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