Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) Commissioner Leo Roy today announced that \u201cMy Community, My Trees\u201d will serve as the theme for the agency\u2019s fifth grade Arbor Day Poster Contest. Fifth graders from around the state enrolled in both public and private schools are encouraged to participate in the annual Arbor Day Poster Contest by creating posters highlighting this year\u2019s theme. Schools are then asked to host a poster contest to determine the winner. The winning poster from each school can then be submitted to the agency for review. Additionally, home schooled or non-participating school students may submit their posters and enter the contest individually.\n\n\u201cThe many benefits of trees improve our daily lives, and I\u2019m thrilled that each year fifth graders demonstrate that importance by participating in the Department of Conservation and Recreation\u2019s annual Arbor Day Poster Contest,\u201d said DCR Commissioner Leo Roy. \u201cI look forward to 2018\u2019s creative entries from students throughout the Commonwealth highlighting this year\u2019s theme \u2018My Community, My Trees\u2019.\u201d\n\nFirst place prizes for the DCR Arbor Day Poster Contest include a tree planting ceremony at the winner\u2019s school, a certificate for art and science supplies, and more. Second Place, Third Place, and Honorable Mention winners will also receive art and science supplies.\n\nTrees offer many benefits to the environment, which include:\n\nThe reduction in energy consumption;\n\tThe cleansing of both water and air;\n\tThe reduction of noise pollution;\n\tThe beautification of communities; and,\n\tThe providing of habitats for wildlife.\nThis year\u2019s theme, \u201cMy Community, My Trees\u201d is designed to highlight the importance of trees within Massachusetts\u2019 communities and diverse landscapes throughout the state. Additionally, the Arbor Day Poster Contest combines both art and science in an effort to instill the vital role trees have on the public\u2019s daily lives.\n\nThe DCR Urban and Community Forestry Program, with support from the U.S. Forest Service, sponsors the annual contest for fifth graders across the Commonwealth. Posters must be submitted by March 15, 2018, and the contest is open to all students currently enrolled in the fifth grade.\u00a0An Arbor Day Poster Contest Guide\u00a0\u00a0is available on the DCR website or can be obtained by contacting Mollie Freilicher, 413-577-2966 or\email@example.com.