STIHL Program Supports Recovery for Wildfire-Damaged State Parks

The project will span the year with a total of 2,201 trees being planted, focusing on Collier Memorial State Park in Oregon and Lake Oroville State Recreation Area in California.

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In recognition of Arbor Day, STIHL Inc. announced its support of recovery efforts in two Pacific Northwest state parks with the planting of 2,021 trees in 2021. In response to the devastating effects of wildfires in 2020, STIHL collaborated with state parks in California and Oregon to help restore these natural treasures.

The project will span the year, focusing on Collier Memorial State Park in Chiloquin, Oregon and Lake Oroville State Recreation Area in Oroville, California, and officially kicked off June 7-9. 

In addition to funds for trees, STIHL has donated augers for efficient planting. To assist with clearing of burned and hazardous trees, STIHL also provided the expertise of two professional arborists, Mark Chisholm and Katelyn Johnson. Both joined STIHL representatives to offer training to park personnel. Volunteers with All Hands and Hearts, a natural disaster relief organization, will also assist with planting.

“We’re excited to work alongside the dedicated staff who love and care for our country’s amazing state parks,” said Roger Phelps, STIHL Inc. corporate communications manager. “It’s an honor to do our part to assist in the recovery effort, and plant trees and offer expert advice on safe management practices to ensure our parks thrive.”

Wildfires impacted more than 1.2 million acres across Oregon in 2020. The tumultuous weather events resulted in the evacuation of 40,000 people, disrupting entire communities with loss of life and infrastructure. In Collier Memorial State Park, 400 of the park’s 537 acres burned. Collier, located north of Klamath Falls, attracts more than 300,000 visits a year and features a world-famous outdoor museum of historic logging equipment.

“Oregon’s special places become parks in the first place thanks to community support, and it’s wonderful to have support again when they need help recovering from a disaster,” said Lisa Sumption, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department Director. “The wildfires of 2020 wounded Oregon in many ways, and we’re thankful to STIHL for stepping up to help Collier start on the long road to recovery.”

In Northern California, more than 650 fires ignited during mid-August 2020. The North Complex fire, combined with the Potters fire, impacted approximately 70% of the 168 miles of shoreline that is considered Lake Oroville State Recreation Area. The record-breaking intensity of the fires resulted in complete loss of vegetation surrounding some of the recreation facilities, such as boat launches, campgrounds and trails.

“Our neighboring communities at Lake Oroville State Recreation Area, our staff and their families have faced a number of unprecedented challenges in recent years,” said California State Parks Director Armando Quintero. “It is an honor to partner with STIHL and acknowledge the devastation that these communities have suffered and the importance of restoring the recreation areas around them. It is a vital part of everyone’s regrowth.”

At both state parks, STIHL was joined by noted conservation advocate Ryan Callaghan, director of conservation for MeatEater and host of “Cal’s Week in Review,” a podcast presented by STIHL.

“I'm really looking forward to working and learning alongside STIHL and state park employees as we begin the recovery work in these important state parks,” said Callaghan. “Timber management is crucial to overall forest health as well as wildlife habitat and is an incredibly important tool in the conservation tool kit. I am excited to join the staff and volunteers and bring attention to this important project.”