Arbor Month Challenge winners announced

Quarry Park and Nature Preserve, Stearns County Parks. Photographer: Dawn Holler, winner in best location category.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources announces the winners of the Arbor Month #31DaysOfTrees Challenge. During May, Minnesotans participated in the challenge by posting a photo or video of how they got their daily dose of trees on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. 

With over 900 entries, picking five winners was a difficult task for the Minnesota Arbor Month Advisory Committee. Winners were selected from five categories designed to get people outside enjoying trees. Winning shots capture trees across the state, from the North Shore to the Twin Cities to Rochester.

The #31DaysOfTrees Challenge winners are:

  • Best selfie: Emily Sauer, Minneapolis.
  • Best video: Megan Hadley, Minneapolis.
  • Best location: Dawn Holler, Waite Park.
  • Most unique tree: Jenn Singer, Chanhassen.
  • Most creative: Nick Nicklaus, Eagan.

Winners received a Minnesota state parks permit and 10 trees planted in their honor in one of Minnesota’s 59 state forests.

“Getting your daily dose of trees is good for your health,” said Jennifer Teegarden, DNR forestry outreach specialist. “We created the #31DaysOfTrees challenge to celebrate Arbor Month and the health benefits of trees.”

The shade from trees helps reduce skin cancer by blocking harmful UV rays, Teegarden said. And, spending time in forests decreases mental fatigue by relaxing and restoring the mind, and lowers blood pressure and heart rate.

“I had a great time getting out and exploring Minnesota’s forests to find cool trees to use during this challenge,” said Jenn Singer of Chanhassen. “I felt energized and refreshed. Trees are really good for your health.”

Visit the Minnesota Arbor Month webpage to see the winning entries and to learn how trees are good for your health. To view all entries, search Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #31DaysOfTrees.

This summer, continue to get outside and enjoy all the health benefits trees provide. And make sure your trees are properly watered and cared for. Check out the DNR’s seasonal tree care tips on the tree care webpage.