It’s hard to believe, but this April will mark four years since our Historic White Oak had to be taken down. Since then, we have been working to utilize wood from the tree in many projects. We trust this note will bring you all up to date on “everything Oak Tree.”
As you may recall, we received a commitment from Frank Pollaro of Pollaro Furniture to design and build a new communion table for our sanctuary as well as a new conference table for Bernards Township. We are very excited to report that the communion table is in the final stages of production and should be completed in the next month or so. The Township table is also moving along and should be completed by mid-year. Frank has truly accomplished miracles considering the many obstacles he had to overcome during the milling/cutting process. We will be forever grateful for his commitment to memorializing our Historic White Oak.
Oak Tree Cross Section
With an eye to creating a memorial to our oak tree, Frank Pollaro preserved the first cut from the trunk of the tree. After Frank oversaw sanding, oiling and allowing time for further drying, we engaged Keith Keiling to execute loading and safely transporting the cross section to a storage site close to the church. We are now starting the process of establishing the engineering requirements for mounting the cross section in Westminster Hall as a permanent memorial. This cross- section weighs 975 pounds and is 8 feet across at its widest point! While work has begun on this process, there is no time horizon as yet for the final move.
Oak Tree Stump
Keiling Tree has plans to revitalize the stump to prevent further deterioration. This project includes sanding and smoothing the stump followed by applying up to three coats of a marine finish epoxy. The goal is to preserve, protect, and showcase the natural beauty of this remaining piece. This work will be completed as weather permits.
Baby Oak Tree
Our baby oak is continuing to thrive in its new location behind our church. Keiling Tree has committed to its care with quarterly inspections to determine needed fertilizer and sprays to maintain its health.
While the Covid 19 pandemic has sidelined us for much of 2020, we have not wavered from our commitment to completing the projects envisioned in the fall of 2016 when the Oak Tree Task Force was created.
~Bill Emmitt and Jon Klippel