Familes are invited to participate in Forest Aid restoration projects, which will include planting days April 10 through May 9. While volunteering, you can log your time through the Lighthouse Project's Make a Million Smiles website.

Big Bear Valley, CA — The burn areas near Butler Peak, site of the September 2007 Butler and Butler #2 Fires to the west of Fawnskin, will be the focus of the Forest Aid 2010 replanting effort overseen by the San Bernardino National Forest Association. This spring, the SBNFA’s Forest Aid will partner with TreePeople to plant 25,000 seedlings, continuing the 2009 project launched at Hanna Flats Campground and surrounding the YMCA’s Camp Whittle, to restore and revitalize the forests of the San Bernardino mountains; though contingent on the weather, the first planting day is scheduled for Saturday, April 10. However, before planting begins, the SBNFA is encouraging community members to jump on the Lighthouse Project’s Make a Million Smiles volunteering campaign, and launching March Madness events in support of forest restoration. SBNFA’s Sarah Miggins explains, “Forest Aid 2010 is especially critical to the Big Bear Valley restoration efforts. Our goal of 25,000 seedlings in this short period of time is a rally cry for the Big Bear community to help restore our backyard. It’s a sort of madness, if you will, to build awareness and recruit the thousands of volunteers needed to meet our goal.” To that end, March Madness activities, which will offer information about the project, begin this evening, with the first of two free movies being shown at the Big Bear Discovery Center. This evening at 6:30pm, families are invited to the DC for a free screening of “A Bug’s Life”; “Finding Nemo” will be featured at March 22’s free movie night. On Wednesday, March 17, Forest Aid representatives will be on hand for Stillwell’s St. Patrick’s Day celebration at Northwoods Resort, starting at 6pm, and, on Sunday, March 28, the Bowling Barn hosts a Pins for Pines Bowling Tournament; teams of four-to-five bowlers are welcome to participate in this Forest Aid fundraising opportunity, starting at 11am on the 28th. For more information, or to sign up, contact the SBNFA’s Kathy Clapsaddle via email.