LGBTQ+ groups from across Marquette including Upper Peninsula Rainbow Pride and NMU’s Queers and Allies group gathered at McCarty’s Cove on Friday, Oct. 22 to plant 100 trees at the PRIDE Tree Planting Event.
The event was organized by junior history major Mossy Schumann who wanted to plan an event that brought together queer youth in the Marquette community while simultaneously help protect the Lake Superior shoreline.
“I had just gotten back from the Ride With Pride Event that I spoke at. There were so many young people there and they were all talking about how they didn’t know that there were all these other people their age who were also queer and in Marquette,” Schumann said. “My brain immediately went ‘oh my god, organizing opportunity.’”
Schumann, who worked with the Great Lakes Climate Corps over the summer, knew about the GLCC’s plan to plant as many trees as they possibly could this year, and so partnered with Superior Watershed Partnership and the GLCC to acquire 100 young red and white pine trees. The trees were planted in predetermined areas along the shoreline by a small group of volunteers.
“The GLCC has this plan; they want to plant this ungodly amount of trees by the end of the year … and also the shoreline needs restoring, as we all know, especially with the summer months people are just cutting through,” Schumann said. “We already have kind of a fragile shoreline and trees are really good at keeping shorelines intact with their root systems.”
The trees were planted in under two hours and the volunteers gathered afterwards for snacks and a group photo. While most of the participants were over the age of 18, Schumann considers the event to be a success and hopes to host similar events for queer youth and encourage more participation in the future.