Memorial trees planted

Sebago Canoe Club is a Parks concession and one of the capital improvements we committed to in our new lease agreement is planting native plants and trees. Yesterday, contractors working with the Parks Department’s Tree Time program planted two two eastern red cedars–also known as junipers–at the southwest corner of our grounds.

One of the trees is intended as a memorial to John Wright, a former commodore and indefatigable volunteer who served as Sebago’s head groundskeeper and Maintainer-in-Chief right up until his death this past winter (the Club also made a donation to the Brooklyn Botanical Garden on John’s behalf).

The other tree was donated by Tom Klinger (aka Quint) in honor of his partner, Bonnie Aldinger, another remarkable and beloved Club volunteer, instructor and trip leader who died a few months after John.

Why cedars? Until about 100 years ago, when the mouth of Paerdegat Creek was transformed into the trench called Paerdegat Basin–part of an abortive attempt to create a seaport in Jamaica Bay–the banks of the creek were home to New York City’s last maritime cedar forest. Of course two small trees may not constitute a fully-fledged restoration effort, but they’re a start!

6 Responses

  1. Joan Byron says:

    Thank you for this post. Glad that these trees will memorialize John Wright and Bonnie Aldinger, who both gave to Sebago and it’s members so much.

  2. Angela says:

    Wonderful tribute to two beautiful people

  3. Jeff says:

    Great work, Rob. These trees will be a living memory of two amazing people who planted so much for us all.

  4. Laurie Bleich says:

    Thank you so much for working to create this memorial for two wonderful people

    Laurie B.

  5. Milton Puryear says:

    Thanks Rob.

  6. Agnes Marton says:

    Wonderful tribute, a wonderful memorial gesture.
    I am hoping that you have some records of your members going back to the 1960s. I and my husband George Marton were members for many years. If possible, I would like to arrange for a tree to be planted in memory of my husband, who raced canoes for Sebago Canoe Club in the 1960s. George was the national single-blade champion for several years, winning many races in singles and doubles. He also trained many of the canoeist who continued to race for the club.
    Please let me know it is possible to honor the Club, and honor George’s memory, by arranging additional plantings at the club.
    Thank you.

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