City of Kent reaches out to homeowners.

The Cityof Kent’s Parks, Recreation & Community Services is proud of what the 2011 Community Forestry Assistance grant enabled us to do. Not only did we assess and map the health of Kent’s recently annexed Panther Lake natural areas as an addendum to the Green Kent Partnership’s 20-Year Park & Natural Area Management Plan, but we produced outreach information about two prevalent invasive species, Himalayan blackberry and English ivy. The materials were produced in English and translated into the other top four languages spoken by Kent residents: Spanish, Vietnamese, Russian and Punjabi. The goal is to help homeowners and renters recognize these weeds, explain what they are doing and how to remove them. It appears on the front page of and a short version ran on the back page of the winter Parks Program Guide, directing readers to the Green Kent website for more information. The guide reaches 52,000 residents.

But we didn’t stop there! We added animation, turning it into a 38-second video called Something is Invading our Parks that is running frequently on Kent TV-21 and has been distributed widely. Humor is a great educational tool, and we hope people will get the point that invasive species are scary!

For the full  Green Kent Partnership Story, check out this 8-minute video, also running on Kent TV-21 and available on various websites. We all know it takes many vehicles to inform citizens about the importance of environmental restoration. We are taking advantage of every technology possible.