'Trees,' A Tribute to the Historic Oak, at Bernards Library on Thurs. Night

The Basking Ridge oak tree in spring 2014. Credits: By Linda Sadlouskos
The centuries-old Basking Ridge oak tree failed to grow many leaves in 2016, and those that sprouted were dead by the end of the summer. Credits: By Linda Sadlouskos
The Basking Ridge oak tree stands starkly in April 2017, less than two weeks before it is ready to be removed. Credits: By Patrick Boylan
Earlier in 2016, extensive testing took place to try to determine why the tree was dying before the community's eyes. Credits: By Linda Sadlouskos
A service to honor the tree was held last fall at the Basking Ridge Presbyterian Church, a historic site that was predated by the tree. Credits: By Linda Sadlouskos
The Bernards Township Library, 32 S. Maple Ave., Basking Ridge Credits: By Linda Sadlouskos

BERNARDS TWP., NJ - "Trees," A Tribute To A Historic Oak Tree, is scheduled to be held less than a week before the giant oak is due to be removed, from 7 to 8 p.m. this Thursday, April 20, at the Bernards Township Library.

The event at the library is described as an evening of stories and songs about local history, including a performance of "Trees," a newly composed tribute song to Basking Ridge's historic 600 year old oak tree.

Presenter of the program is local musician and author Gordon Thomas Ward.

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The removal of the 600-year-old white oak, located at the historic churchyard at the Basking Ridge Presbyterian Church at 1 East Oak St., is scheduled to begin next Monday, April 24.

There are a number of events scheduled in the final countdown to the tree's removal, including a fundraising gala on Wednesday night.

Among the events planned will be a walking tour of historic Basking Ridge Village, to be led by Paula Axt of the historical society, between 1 to 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 23, the last day the tree is due to remain standing. The tour is scheduled to begin at the Brick Academy Museum at 15 West Oak St., and tickets must be reserved ahead. Details are here. 

The Historical Society of The Somerset Hills has set up a gofundme site to help the Basking Ridge Presbyterian Church cover the cost of taking down and memorializing the 600-year-old tree.

Hundreds attended memorial service

The Basking Ridge Presbyterian Church held a memorial service for the tree last November that was attended by hundreds of residents of all ages, as well as some visitors from nearby communities.

Pre-registration is requested. A form is online. The Bernards Township Library is located at 32 S. Maple Ave., Basking Ridge.


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