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Community & Clubs: Planting seeds for the future

February 26, 2013|By Jim de Boom

On Saturday, more than 30 members of the Rotary Club of Newport-Balboa will be sprucing up more than 2,500 carrotwood tree seedlings in preparation of presenting them to third-graders in all 21 public and 15 private schools within the boundaries of the Newport-Mesa Unified School District the week of March 4.

The Rotary Club's Arbor Day activity was started in 1969 by Newport-Balboa's past president and chairman of the Orange County Board of Supervisors, the late Gen. Thomas F. Riley, and his good friend Cecil Schira, then president of Hines Nursery. For the past 44 years, Rotarians have given to third-graders more than 100,000 trees, many of which can be seen greening the yards of homes in Costa Mesa and Newport Beach, according to Bill Hossfeld, Arbor Day chair for the Rotary Club.

Rotarians, as they visit the third-grade classes, point out that trees provide beauty and shade, help to fight effects of pollution, provide oxygen, and combat the effects of global warming, according to Hossfeld.

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A 15-gallon flame tree will be planted at Sonora Elementary School, 966 Sonora Road, Costa Mesa at 7:45 a.m. March 7 for Flag Deck. Costa Mesa's mayor and City Council, NMUSD Supt. Fred Navarro and members of the school board have been invited to attend. Honorary Rotarian Jack Hammett, a Pearl Harbor survivor, along with some of his fellow World War II survivors, will present colors and lead the Pledge of Allegiance, and the Sonora Elementary School band will play. The public is invited to attend this ceremony.

Wounded warriors event

The Newport Beach Sunrise Rotary Club will hold its annual fundraiser March 22 to support "wounded warriors" and their families at Camp Pendleton. Because they are still considered on active duty, these wounded, injured, and/or ill Marines and Navy corpsmen are not eligible for programs like the Wounded Warrior Project, which only helps veterans.

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