October 16, 2020

Natomas Oaks Park to be Renamed the Ray and Judy Tretheway Oak Preserve

Ray Tretheway standing next to a newly planted tree
Ray Tretheway standing next to a newly planted tree

Ray, Judy, and their community successfully advocated for the City of Sacramento to acquire this oak grove and adjacent land to be designated as a nature preserve. The oak preserve is nearly all that is left of the magnificent groves that existed here in the 1800s. Centuries ago, this small patch of land was part of thousands of acres of other oaks.  These oaks were here when the first settlers arrived in California. The grove’s historical significance is protected because of the Tretheways’ and the community’s quick action to maintain the picturesque area.

Naming this park after Ray and Judy is particularly significant given their special connection to this heritage oak grove.  Located near Ray and Judy’s home, their daughter was married under its magnificent trees in 2005. Ray visits the park regularly, and Judy leads silent meditation retreats and forest bathing, or shinrin yoku, underneath the trees’ canopy.

This December, Ray will retire as Executive Director at the Sacramento Tree Foundation after nearly four decades of service. Under his stewardship, the Foundation has planted over one million trees, giving Sacramento the well-earned title of the largest hand-planted urban forest in the world.  Ray’s deep love for the area’s trees and his devotion to safeguarding their existence is the cornerstone of the Foundation’s legacy.

As a testament to the Tretheways’ commitment to Sacramento’s urban forest, the community, and the environment, the City will be installing two naming signs and a plaque in honor of Ray and Judy.  Later this year, the Foundation will also announce Ray’s successor and celebrate Ray’s lifetime of public service to the Sacramento Region.

To learn more about the Sacramento Tree Foundation or to make a donation in Ray’s name, visit their website at sactree.com.

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