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Trees Forever and Black Hills Energy team up for planting in Story City

Power of Trees program on May 3 continues longtime partnership

STORY CITY (April 14, 2014) - Volunteers are invited to help plant trees in Story City on Saturday, May 3, as part of the Trees Forever Power of Trees partnership with Black Hills Energy.

The tree planting is one of 25 special events being held throughout the year to mark the 25th anniversary of Trees Forever, which was founded in 1989. Story City is a longtime participant in the Power of Trees program, having received grant funds every year since 1993. The city is providing a match for the $4,000 grant.

About 30 trees will be planted by Story City Trees Forever volunteers, scouts and other community members on May 3, beginning at 9 a.m. at Jacobson Park. The general public is also invited. Some of the trees will be planted along the community's trail as part of a project being developed through the Trees Forever Trails Visioning program.

"Trees Forever and Black Hills Energy are very excited to support this project, as we know it will provide years and years of beauty and benefits to the community," said Shannon Ramsay, Trees Forever Founding President and CEO. "We want to thank our local volunteers for their hard work and their dedication to improving the environment and quality of life in Story City. Together, we are planting a better tomorrow."

"Black Hills Energy's company-wide Power of Trees program is designed to encourage energy efficiency, environmental awareness, sustainability and community stewardship," said Jim Dillon, Energy Efficiency Program Manager for Black Hills Energy. "Our partnership with Trees Forever and local community volunteers is a wonderful opportunity to collaborate for great results in the communities we serve."

Longtime volunteer Mike Jensen noted that the Story City partnership with Black Hills and Trees Forever has provided enormous value to Story City since 1993. "The numbers alone are impressive with over 2400 trees planted and $426,356 in tree cost, community match, volunteer labor and maintenance added to the community," he said. "It has been a big plus for Story City, not just environmentally but helping make Story City a more beautiful place to live. Best of all there have been youth involved in every one of our 76 projects since 1993."

Brad Riphagen, Trees Forever Field Coordinator, said the trees will save energy, improve air and water quality, provide habitat and offer many other benefits to the community.

* What: Power of Trees planting
* When: Saturday, May 3, beginning at 9 a.m.
* Where: Meet at Jacobson Park in Story City.
* Other: Volunteers should bring their own shovels and wear appropriate clothing (sturdy footwear and pants, sun and wind protection.)

For more information, contact Brad Riphagen, 515-370-1291, or

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Trees Forever is a nonprofit organization based in Marion, IA committed to planting trees, encouraging community involvement and stewardship, and caring for the environment. Programs focus on improving air and water quality, increasing wildlife habitat, providing substantial energy savings and beautifying our landscape. For more information visit or call 800-369-1269.

Black Hills/Iowa Gas Utility Company, LLC d/b/a Black Hills Energy, serves 151,000 natural gas customers in 130 Iowa communities. Black Hills Energy is a subsidiary of Black Hills Corp., a diversified energy company based in Rapid City, S.D., Black Hills Corp. serves 765,000 natural gas and electric utility customers in Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming.

Brad Riphagen




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