Goderich Tornado ReLeaf Program replaces trees destroyed by tornado

GODERICH, ON, May 19, 2012 /CNW/ – Home Hardware Stores Limited and Tree Canada came together today to re-beautify an area of Goderich heavily affected by the devastating F3 tornado that struck the Southwestern Ontario town last August.

The area, which borders the Maitland River, was once home to scenic walking trails populated with century old trees ranging from sugar maple to white pine. Uprooting and killing trees in its path, the tornado left the site completely destroyed.

Over the past 13 years, Home Hardware has partnered with Tree Canada to improve green spaces across the country planting 16,000 trees and shrubs totaling more than $700,000. Home Hardware has committed to replace the trees that were lost in the storm as part of Tree Canada’s ‘Goderich Tornado ReLeaf’ program.

To celebrate the re-beautification of the site, a public ceremony marked the planting of 67 large trees, measuring between 6-15 feet in height including sugar maple, red oak and white birch, by a team led by new local Home Hardware Dealer-Owner Norm Watson of Watson’s Home Hardware.

“At Watson’s Home Hardware we operate on the business philosophy of ‘Home Owners helping homeowners’ and as one of Tree Canada’s long time partners, we are thrilled to help re-beautify Goderich with this tree planting,” said Norm Watson. “This initiative allows Home Owners from coast-to-coast to help this community in a very real and tangible way.”

The ceremony, which included speeches from local dignitaries, concluded with the unveiling of the ‘Home Hardware Tree Grove’ sign to commemorate the planting.

“The spirit in which our entire community continues to come together to rebuild our town remains strong and has shown us how much optimism and positivity can come from the darkest of days,” said Mayor of Goderich, Delbert (Deb) Shewfelt. “On behalf of the ‘Prettiest town in Canada,’ I’d like to thank Home Hardware and Tree Canada for restoring this area so that it may be enjoyed by the deserving residents of Goderich for years to come.”

The event was preceded by Goderich Communities in Bloom’s Get Bloomin’ Spring Garden Symposium that featured speakers including Home Hardware’s gardening expert Mark Cullen and Denis Flanagan, Manager at Landscape Ontario and HGTV host.The workshop provided gardening techniques and trends for all Goderich residents who, as a result of the tornado, are starting over with their landscaping and gardens.

About Home Hardware Stores Limited

100% Canadian owned and operated, Home Hardware Stores Limited has a presence in every Canadian province and territory and is the country’s largest independent, Dealer-owned hardware, lumber, building materials and furniture cooperative. Founded on January 1, 1964 by 122 independent hardware Dealers, the cooperative now includes more than 1,080 stores, under the Home Hardware, Home Building Centre, Home Hardware Building Centre and Home Furniture banners, with annual collective retail sales of more than $5 billion. Home Hardware’s independent Dealer-Owners, recognized by the North American Retail Hardware Association as Canada’s best-trained Dealer group, have access to 100,000 quality brand name and private label products, a world-class distribution system and draw upon the power of Home Hardware’s network to provide their local communities with top quality products and services at competitive prices.

About Tree Canada

Tree Canada is a not-for-profit charitable organization that works with sponsors, donors and communities to plant and care for rural and urban trees, promotes urban forests in Canada and facilitates carbon offset projects with trees. To date, more than 77 million trees have been planted, more than 450 schoolyards have been greened, and Tree Canada has organized 9 national urban forest conferences. More information about Tree Canada is available at www.treecanada.ca.

Image with caption: “Norm and Richard Watson of Watson’s Home Hardware are joined by Goderich Mayor Deb Shewfelt and Tree Canada’s President Michael Rosen as they celebrate Home Hardware’s commitment to restore scenic walking trails destroyed by the tornado that struck Goderich last summer. (CNW Group/Home Hardware Stores Limited)”. Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20120519_C8837_PHOTO_EN_13960.jpg

SOURCE Home Hardware Stores Limited

For further information:

Lindsey Dietrich
Public Relations Coordinator,
Home Hardware Stores Limited at 519-741-4574 or lindsey.dietrich@homehardware.ca.

Rob Wallace
Public Relations and Promotional Events Manager,
Home Hardware Stores Limited at 519-498-3088 or rob.wallace@homehardware.ca.

Mike Rosen
Tree Canada at 613-567-5545 ext. 222 or mrosen@treecanada.ca.