IL Town Hit by Tornado Replanting with Help

GIFFORD, Ill. (AP) — Gifford lost dozens of homes to a tornado last November but the small east-central Illinois town also lost a lot of trees.

Volunteers plan to replace more than 200 of them this weekend in a mass tree planting.

Brad Uken is manager of the Champaign County Farm Bureau and one of the volunteers. He told The News-Gazette in Champaign that the Saturday event will happen unless the rain forecast this week leaves the ground too muddy.

Gifford was hit hard by one the roughly two-dozen tornadoes that touched down across Illinois on Nov. 17. The town of 975 people is about 20 miles northeast of Champaign.

The plan is to plant 235 trees around town.

More than 125 people have volunteered to help.

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