On the morning of April 28, those traveling County Road 393 south might notice a group of people planting trees along the roadway in front of Gulf Cemetery.
Allen French, founder of Trees on the Coast, is teaming with the Ohana Institute to beautify the cemetery by planting four live oaks along the road.
"We lost some trees four years ago when we had flooding," said William Keyes, Gulf Cemetery's board chairman.
When Keyes spoke to a landscaper about planting more, the landscaper told Keyes about the Trees on the Coast organization, which is a non-profit that donates trees for public beautification.
French thought this beautification project would be perfect for Trees on the Coast, and a good opportunity to not only have a tree-planting event, but also an educational program with students from the Ohana Institute.
"We will teach kids about the importance of trees and the proper way to plant a tree. This will be a hands-on experience for the students," said French.
French also expects a large crowd of teachers, administrators, parents, and students, as well as volunteers who tend the cemetery, to attend.
"We typically do educational programs and tree plantings on school grounds," said French, "but since Ohana Institute is located in Rosemary Beach, they don't have anywhere to plant trees, so we decided to combine our donation to the cemetery with an educational program for the students."
"I am told that they will be pretty large trees and will need four men to lift them," said Keyes.
The event will also be a celebration of Earth Day.
The planting is scheduled for 9 a.m. April 28.
The historic Gulf Cemetery is 104 years old. President Woodrow Wilson granted the land for the cemetery and it has been run by an all-volunteer board for the entire 104 years.