City arboretum to be named for local naturalist

Carol McFeeters-Thompson Arboretum


CLINTON — The Clinton Tree Commission announced it plans to name the city arboretum for former local naturalist Carol McFeeters-Thompson.  The announcement came during the Feb. 6 city council meeting.

Thompson served for many years as the site interpreter of the Union Schoolhouse area of Weldon Springs State Recreation Area.  She also was part of the annual Earth Day activities at Clinton Schools and wrote a regular nature column for the Clinton Journal.  Thompson also served on the first Clinton Tree Commission.

Tree Commission member Edith Brady-Lunny briefed the council about the plan.

“With your approval, of course, we would like to name the arboretum area in the city for Carol McFeeters-Thompson,” Lunny told commissioners.

Lunny said two or three generations of local residents likely remember Thompson and the work she did. 

“She taught every kid in Clinton schools everything they needed to know about nature,” Lunny said.

Lunny added, Thompson was a volunteer at Weldon Springs for many years before the state hired her as site interpreter.  Thompson also conducted a walking survey of every tree along the city boulevards, while she served on the Tree Commission.

The city arboretum spans a two to three square block area along E. Washington and E. Main Street.

Temporary signs would be erected for the April observance of Arbor Day, and permanent signs would be installed later identifying the area as the Carol McFeeters-Thompson Arboretum, Lunny said.

The Tree Commission has printed new brochures for residents who would like to donate a tree or to a fund for new trees.

Commissioner John Wise served with Thompson on the Tree Commission.  He said he couldn’t imagine any objection to naming the arboretum for her.

“She was the driving force,” Wise said.  “And, I don’t think we need to go any further other than getting a consensus.  I’m definitely in favor, and I don’t see a problem with it.”

The other commissioners agreed.

“There’s nobody more deserving, that’s for sure,” said Tom Edmunds.

Arbor Day observance and ceremony is scheduled for the morning of Saturday, April 27, at the city arboretum.