AUGUSTA — Mark P. DesMeules, Viles Arboretum executive director, recently welcomed Central Maine Power’s President and CEO Doug Herling to tour the grounds of the arboretum and to see first-hand the planned location for the new Educational Support Center.

“The proposed wooden structure will significantly aid us today and well into the future in serving our many visitors. All of our existing and future programs will benefit from this support facility. This includes our community garden program, food and forest initiative, bee keeping, summer naturalist camp, nature-based workshops, trail enhancement initiative, interpretive sign program, botanical labelling effort, efforts to enhance public use of our trails, farmers market, our community apiary project, botanical collections restoration, MaineGeneral Hospital Healthy Living Program, and other activities in the works. The intended outcomes in the short term will be that support for all of these activities will no longer require stretching the limits of our inadequate resources. All of our public outreach activities will be accomplished at a higher level of performance, with greater efficiency, with better outcomes all while allowing for growth,” said DesMeules, according to the release from Viles Arboretum.

To support the center, CMP has contributed $2,000 towards this project, pushing the arboretum over the $100,000 mark and significantly advancing its goal towards closure of this campaign.

With its fundraising goal being $130,000 and with the help of the Kennebec Savings Bank, the Quimby Foundation, the Betterment Fund, Central Maine Power, several other funders and nearly 100 arboretum members throughout Maine, the arboretum is making its way toward its goal.

The arboretum hopes for a few crowning gifts of support between now and 2020 so that it can break ground come spring time and get this needed structure on line, according to the release.

Doug Herling, CMP president and CEO, said, “Central Maine Power is so pleased to know that our donation will in part help open a new education support center on the grounds of the arboretum. Viles has done a wonderful job promoting the knowledge and appreciation of trees both inside and outside of Maine for decades,” according to the release.

For more information about the arboretum and its programs, call 626-7989, email [email protected], stop in at 153 Hospital St., visit vilesarboretum.org or check out its Facebook page.

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