Inglewood councilmember Dionne Faulk, mayor James Butts, former councilmember George Dotson, Clippers alum Craig Smith, and City Clerk Aisha Thompson at the Clippers tree planting event (Amanda Scurlock/L.A. Sentinel)

The Los Angeles Clippers recently partnered with Intuit and Aspiration to plant trees in Edward Vincent Park. This event is part of the franchise’s commitment to plant 1,000 trees in Inglewood ahead of the Intuit Dome’s grand opening in 2024.

Inglewood mayor James Butts mentioned how the trees are a “needed” and “very appreciated” addition to the park.

“Edward Vincent Park is 57 acres, the largest park in South Bay,” Butts said. “We have more trees per square mile than any city in the South Bay as well and that’s because the people who designed the city, they recognize the need for trees.”

With the help of the organization TreePeople and volunteers, 45 trees were planted at Edward Vincent Park. Clippers alum Craig Smith was excited to plant trees in his hometown.

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“I was born in Centinela hospital and I just feel so much of the joy,” Smith said. “It’s all about sustainability and all about putting things together and really building a strong foundation.”

TreePeople members helped volunteers properly plant trees (Amanda Scurlock/L.A. Sentinel)

Inglewood District 4 Councilmember Dionne Faulk volunteered to plant trees. She mentioned how the city needs more vegetation.

“I would love to, as councilwoman, beautify the city and make it as pretty inside as it is on the outside,” Faulk said. “When you have a partner like the Clippers that come in and not only want to progress their business but also … have a stake in the beautification in the community and in our kid’s futures, that’s a great community partner.”

Several trees were planted around the outdoor Amphitheater at the park.

“What an awesome experience to be able to witness trees actually going in the ground and then one day to be sprouted out an looking so beautiful,” said Inglewood elected city clerk Aisha Thompson. “I’m sure our residents are happy, our children will grow up and see it and know that the Clippers were very instrumental in making sure our parks and surrounding community looked good.”

Groups of volunteers worked together to plant Aleppo Pine and Coast Live Oak trees. TreePeople urban greening community organizer Talia Dotson is glad to see companies and franchises invest in the environment.

Smith poses with a tree he planted (Amanda Scurlock/L.A. Sentinel)

“It’s really great to see the Intuit Dome that’s coming be a part of putting in more trees to increase the green canopy within Inglewood,” Dotson said. “It’s great that the Clippers are participating because it shows that they care about their city and their residents.”

The buildings in urban areas can cause the heat island effect where these areas become warmer due to solar energy being soaked up by buildings. Trees cool these areas off while giving pedestrians shade on hot days.

“The trees help us with oxygen,” said St. Marys’ student Melaysia Smith who volunteered to plant trees. “You get to meet different people and see everybody in the community come together and help out.”