Downtown Oak Harbor Garry Oak Mural
A beautiful new Garry oak mural graces Oak Harbor’s Downtown! The mural depicts a Garry oak meadow and forest at sunset. The talented local artist, Paula Fries, incorporated many detailed elements including Garry oak ecosystem wildflowers, and even a native squirrel! The mural points the way to historic Smith Park, an arboretum park containing hundreds of ancient Garry oaks and native wildflowers in the heart of old town Oak Harbor.
The mural was funded entirely by private donations from the Oak Harbor Garry Oak Society, Oak Harbor Main Street Association, Island Thrift, and other donors. Thank you to all the donors, friends, members, and the building owner who made Oak Harbor’s first Garry oak mural a reality!
We hope that this mural will bring our iconic Garry oaks to the forefront of community awareness, and that it will be enjoyed for many years to come.
Self-Guided Garry Oak Tour
Created in partnership with the City of Oak Harbor and the Oak Harbor Chamber of Commerce, this 3-mile self-guided walking tour features many beautiful Garry oaks throughout the old town area of Oak Harbor.
The city itself was named for these mighty trees that line its shores. The Garry Oak is the only native oak in the State of Washington, and its population has severely declined in the last two centuries, making them a unique feature in the landscape of Oak Harbor.
Art & Informational Displays
From time to time the Society is invited to create a public display of art or information for the public to enjoy. This has included the Oak Harbor Public Library display case, inside the library near the holds area, and regional art galleries. Collections of Garry oak educational materials, artifacts, photos, art, and Garry oak wood pieces are displayed depending on the space available. Each original art piece is designed to educate the public and stimulate conversations about why Garry oak ecosystems are important in our landscape. Next to the display are books available for check out and brochures explaining more about Pacific NW Oak Communities and Oak Harbor Garry Oak Society. We have received very positive feedback so far on our displays. If you would like to be notified of our upcoming displays, simply subscribe to our quarterly society newsletter.
Smith Park Bench
We are excited to share that the bench we funded has been installed in Smith Park! Located near the new interpretive sign, the bench has a great view of the oaks in the park and Oak Harbor bay.
The inscription reads: “Donated by the Oak Harbor Garry Oak Society – Long Live the Garry Oaks”.
Thank you members and donors who made this possible!
The Garry Oak Society provides community presentations that discuss the importance of the Garry oak and how our organization is helping to preserve these heritage trees. Presentations have been given to the City Council, Oak Harbor Garden Club, Sunrise Rotary, Sound Waters University, numerous K-12 classrooms, and more. If you are interested in having the Garry Oak Society present for your group, please contact us for more information.