Mount Pisgah Arboretum has a rich history and interesting evolution that continues today. Here is a brief listing of landmark events:
1969 – 1979
- Eugene Mayor appoints Committee to establish an international arboretum featuring trees from around the world.
- Governor McCall announces new state park, the Howard Buford Recreation Area (HBRA), a 2,363-acre, ecologically diverse tract on Coast Fork of Willamette River, to include an 118-acre Arboretum.
- Committee incorporates in 1973 as the International Arboretum Association (IAA) and leases land from state.
- First Tree Time newsletter published.
- Active management of the site begins, including clearing of weedy species, trail and bridge building, monthly work parties, and cooperation with local youth agencies.
- AA changed in 1978 to Friends of Mount Pisgah Arboretum (FMPA).
1980 – 1984
- First paid staff hired.
- One mile Nature Trail finished with numbered stations.
- Free formal Outdoor Education Program emphasizing ecology begins in 1980 with 1,000 schoolchildren participating.
- First Spring Wildflower and Fall Mushroom Shows held (1982).
- River Trail built and dedicated to late Governor McCall with coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) planting.
1985 – 1987
- Patricia Baker Memorial Wildflower Garden (disabled-accessible) established.
- School children plant Ginkgo biloba during Arbor Week, starting an annual event.
- First educational displays constructed.
- Restrooms built.
- Species rhododendron garden begun.
- Entrance area information kiosk built.
- Visitor Center opens, staffed by volunteers.
- Education program, with 50 volunteers, reaches 2,000+ children.
- Lane County assumes HBRA and FMPA lease agreement from state.
1988 – 1989
- County contracts with FMPA for maintenance and supervision of Howard Buford Recreation Area.
- MPA business office opens in nearby Emerald People’s Utility District building.
- Handicapped accessible rest rooms completed.
1990 – 1993
- Outdoor education program increases by 25%.
- Master Plan, funded by grants from Meyer Memorial Trust, completed.
1994 – 1995
- First Executive Director hired.
- Education program adds fall session, offers a variety of seasonal curricula for returning classes, and serves 3,000 children.
1996 – 1997
- New 50-year lease expands Arboretum to 209-acres.
- Renovations to Visitor Center and barn started.
- 7+ miles of all-weather trails and 22 bridges completed.
- Parking lot plantings started.
- Redwood Grove enhanced, and So. Oregon and N. California species are acquired for future plantings.
- Waterways curricula added to Education Program.
1998 – 2000
- David Douglas Monument completed on South Boundary Trail.
- Fire burns 123 acres of Upper Bowl to summit of Mt. Pisgah.
2000 – 2003
- First Arbor Day Plant Sale held in April 2001.
- First extended workshops on gardening with native plants given.
- New, on-site office completed for use by Arboretum staff.
- 30th Anniversary of Arboretum celebrated.
- Campaign to replace Quonset Hut begun.
2004 – 2007
- 900 sq. ft. lean-to added to the east side of Great Meadow Barn.
- 3,000 sq. ft. White Oak Pavilion completed.
- Lane County paves Entrance Road after completing a new Coast Fork bridge.
- Insulated Bob Dickson Shop completed in Great Meadow Barn.
2008 – 2011
- Two support buildings east of the White Oak Pavilion completed.
- Oak Savanna Trail completed.
- 30th Annual Mushroom Festival held October 30, 2011.