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Bozeman man raises money to plant trees at Lewis and Bark dog park in memory of friend who died

Oliver made a deal with the city: that if he could come up with the money to buy the trees, he could plant them---so, he started a GoFundMe.
Posted at 7:16 PM, Oct 11, 2023

A Bozeman man is on a mission to spruce up the Lewis and Bark Dog Park—literally.

“I’m just amazed,” said Andy Oliver. “It’s been an incredible response.”

What planted the seed in Oliver’s mind to raise money toward planting trees at Lewis and Bark Dog Park was the unfortunate passing of someone very close to him.

“My friend’s name was Kristin Burns,” said Oliver. “The memorial suggestion was to plant a tree in her honor.”

But Oliver thought why not plant a bunch of trees in her honor?

“It’s pretty barren out here,” said Oliver. “There aren’t very many trees.”

So he made a deal with the city, that if he could come up with the money to buy the trees, he could plant them.

He started a GoFundMe pledging to match the first $400 raised. In just a few hours he raised $500.

As of Wednesday, Oct. 11:

“We’ve raised $1125,” said Oliver. “If we get too much money, we’re gonna have too many trees to water—and that’s a part of the deal. We’ve got to water them for the next 2 years.”

Also a part of the deal is finding people who will help water them, which Deputy Mayor Terry Cunningham says is a big commitment.

“I personally helped water the existing trees in this park for two years with wheel barrels,” said Cunningham. “I can attest that it’s a highly labor-intensive job.”

It’ll take 15 gallons of water per week to keep the trees alive, according to Cunningham.

“So, that’s three five-gallon buckets per tree,” said Cunningham.

But even so, he’s encouraging volunteers to step up to help Andy Oliver.

“They’re going to take a long time to grow,” said Oliver. They’ll be growing long after I’m gone, but it’ll be nice to say, ‘We did this.'”

Oliver has scheduled a meeting in the Dog Park on Oct. 14 at noon to discuss the watering plan. To donate, you can visit Oliver's GoFundMe page.