SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — It was 10 years ago this week that hundreds of volunteers came together in Sioux Falls to ‘Tree the Town.’
It was a citywide effort to replace the trees that were lost or had to be taken down after a massive ice storm hit earlier that year and caused millions of dollars in damage.
These were scenes many of us won’t soon forget.
In April of 2013, an ice storm coated everything with a one-inch thick layer of ice.
The first day of the storm, there were over a thousand emergency calls and 53,000 homes and businesses without power.
Over 900 trees had to be taken down and removed due to safety.
In all, it took 8 months to clean up the damage, but the work was far from over.
In the fall, the city put out the call to ‘Tree the Town’, an event sponsored by The Helpline Center, United Way, The Washington Pavilion and KELO-TV.
Volunteers, armed with shovels and gloves, showed up in droves to help replant trees throughout the city; mostly at the homes of disabled, low-income, and elderly people.
Katie Reiley and her fellow church members from King of Glory were just a few who didn’t hesitate to lend a helping hand.
“I think Sioux Falls is great, because we are willing to reach out and help our neighbors in need and our church shows that really well,” Reiley said.
About 200 homeowners requested a tree to replace one taken down in the ice storm.
Organizers said about 500 trees were put into the ground in one day; a day the city decided to ‘Tree the Town.’
“Saturday was an amazing success we had hundreds of volunteers who put hundreds of trees in the ground for us,” Sara Carothers from the Helpline Center said.