The Sunshine Girl Charities Inc. of Manasquan has offered to plant 49 trees, one for each victim, including name plaques in Asbury Park.
Manasquan resident Jacqueline Klosek is the founder and director of Sunshine Girl Charities and said in a release recently that she “was saddened, shaken, and moved to action.”
“And like many people, I wanted to do something, whatever small thing I could do, to respond in some way to the massacre,” Klosek said.
Klosek founded the charity in 2014 with the goal of helping to protect vulnerable beings and resources, and to promote environmental preservation.
Previous Asbury Park projects undertaken by Sunshine Girl include fruit trees planted in the community garden by the Transportation Center, and 10 apple trees planted at the Center in Asbury Park.
In September the group will plant the 49 trees in a memorial grove to the Orlando victims in Library Park.
“We want to create a peaceful place to honor the promising young lives we have lost, and a beautiful place for members of the local community to gather with one another and also to sit and reflect, and hopefully to inspire change,” Klosek said.
Final plans for the memorial grove are still being developed, but Klosek is working with Tom Pivinski, Chairman of the City’s Environmental and Shade Tree Commission.
The grove will be made up of ornamental flowering trees, such as Kwanza Cherries, Japanese Lilac, River Birch, Purple Plum, Hawthorns, Crape Myrtles, Saucer Magnolias, and Kousa Dogwood.