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East Side Lake Tree Trek gets upgrade

Those walking the Tree Trek at East Side Lake will be able to learn a bit more about the trees they encounter.

Researcher Monica Randazzo and Volunteer Programs Coordinator Ashley Reichard, both of Urban and Community Forestry with the University of Minnesota, met with Spruce Up Austin’s Mike Ruzek on Wednesday to update and monitor the Tree Trek, which was completed in 2014. Randazzo and Reichard updated the QR codes on the signs so as to allow access to updated information on each tree.

“There is going to be a lot more information (on the website), a lot more details on all of the trees,” Reichard said.

Randazzo and Reichard also assessed the condition of each tree.

“There are a few trees that have died in the last couple of years,” Randazzo said. “This happens with young trees sometimes. There are a few trees that have broken branches or really thick canopies that need to be thinned out, but they’re all minor things, stuff that we’re catching early and can easily be taken care of.”

Austin’s Tree Trek features 75 trees and spruce recommended for Minnesota.

“Our overall goal for Tree Treks is to provide a space within communities where people can engage with urban forestry easily,” Randazzo said. “We want them to be accessible spaces as well as an entertaining, enjoyable experience with trees in an urban setting. They’re educational, but also fun.”