Around 45 Knoxville residents gathered at the old Maid Rite building Thursday evening to plant wishes under a native Red Maple tree. The Plant a Wish Project is planting a native tree in each state in the U.S. and Iowa’s was planted right here in Marion County. Following the planting attendees continued the festivities at Peace Tree Brewing Company where the award for the biggest trees in Marion County were awarded. This year’s winner is Clay Township resident Betty Person for her 116’ tall Cottonwood tree that is nearly 26’ around. According to the Department of Natural Resources website, this may be the tallest Cottonwood in the state.
Other trees recognized as being among the biggest of their species included a Silver Maple in Knoxville nominated by Dick Schrad, a Red Elm in Knoxville nominated by Candi Stevens, an American Elm south of Attica nominated by Abie Davis, a Pin Oak nominated by Jim and Jody Mansueto in Pella, a Cucumber Magnolia in Knoxville nominated by Kathy Dugger, a Sycamore on the Courthouse lawn, a White Pine on N. Roche in Knoxville, a White Oak on Vermont nominated by Mrs. Nichols, a White Oak near Marysville nominated by Abie Davis, a Burr Oak in Red Rock Township nominated by Ruth Lovey, a Cottonwood south of Lake Red Rock nominated by Will Prather, and a Buckeye in Clay Township nominated by Larry Crozier.