BIG BAY, Mich. (WJMN) – After the Marquette Chorale Society held a concert in April around Earth Day, they decided to partner with environmental non-profits in the area. The plan is to plant 1,000 white cedar trees in the Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve in Big Bay. It’s a collaboration between the Chorale Society, Cedar Tree Institute, and the Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve.

“We started to think about what we could do for the community and celebrate our local environment and celebrate the music,” said Tonja Acker-Richards with the Marquette Chorale Society. “Planting trees came up as a spontaneous idea and Jon Magnuson with the Cedar Tree Institute lit a fire under us with the idea of planting a thousand trees.”

They are asking for volunteers to serve for a few hours. They’ll supply the shovels and directions, you just have to show up and do the work. Dates for planting are all on Saturday’s. May 13, 27, and June 3. Planting is from 9 to Noon. You are asked to meet at the Big Bay Township Hall.

“This is about people stepping up and saying I can do this one small thing. And through those multiple small acts we can take steps to help develop the diversity of the forest. Because the more diverse a forest is, the more healthy it is,” said Jeff Noble, Technical Specialist for Cedar Tree Institute.

The White Cedar was chosen specifically for this project. A native plant to the Upper Peninsula, its numbers have declined. In the video below, Jeff Noble with Cedar Tree Institute talked about the benefits and importance of the White Cedar.

To sign up and let organizers know you are coming, call 906-345-9223.

If you cannot plant trees in person, you can support the initiative by sponsoring trees or designating trees in honor or memory of loved ones. You can visit

If you want to learn more about or are considering joining the Marquette Chorale Society, visit here.