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Ziibiwing Center campaign seeking contributors

Julie Severn

11/12/2002 12:00:00 AM

The Ziibiwing Cultural Society is branching out for contributions to pave a future path to the past.

Commemorative bricks and memorial trees are being sold for display at the entrance of the new Ziibiwing Center.

"We'd like to get the community involved so they may become part of the building and a part of history," said Paul Johnson, Cultural Center planner. "Our goal is to sell 500 bricks and 500 trees to help offset landscaping costs."

The Center will have a 16-acre site and "plenty of room to plant trees," Johnson explained. "We've already had pledges for multiple trees-some families have enough for their own grove."

The 8-inch square bricks and trees-which are about 2-inches in diameter-can be purchased for $150 each. A variety of trees including pine, maple, ash, birch, oak and cedar are among the selection. Inscribed nameplates will leave an everlasting imprint on history in honor of a life well-lived or as a symbol of everlasting affection.

"They may be purchased as a gift to honor a friendship or an individual's service to the community," added Johnson. "We've never tried this before, but so far the response has been positive. It's a gift that keeps on giving."

All donations are fully tax-deductible and little profit is being made, according to Johnson. He added the funds will go toward purchasing, planting and maintaining the trees and bricks.

"Making a donation is a wonderful gift for the holidays or any special occasion," Johnson also stated. "The trees will grow with our children and the bricks will guide them to the grove."

Johnson said he plans to order the trees this coming spring so they may be planted in the fall before the Center's grand opening in December of 2003.

The deadline to participate in the campaign is April 30. For more information on the Ni-Bami Ziibiwing Campaign, contact Johnson at (989) 775-4759 or Kim Cronkite at (989) 775-4121.