An Exceptional Map By Exceptional Teens

For their Girl Scout Gold Award Project, Cristin Lim and Jelene Wong chose to make a walking tour of Honolulu’s Exceptional Trees

Sarah Pacheco
Wednesday - March 02, 2011
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Mary Steiner of The Outdoor Circle stands amid a grove of exceptional Indian banyan trees at ‘Iolani Palace

“You watched (their appreciation) grow, and that’s what we want. We want people to understand the trees and appreciate them,” Steiner adds

Trees are your best antiques. - Alexander Smith (Scottish poet)

Lim and Wong put the final touches on the brochure last October and have since distributed it to businesses and hotels along the walking tour routes, with more requests coming in each week. In fact, the girls say that one of their teachers informed them she would be using their brochures as a learning supplement in her summer school course.

“I thought it was really cool how people really like and appreciate our project,” Wong says.

“We want our participants to take away an appreciation not only of Exceptional Trees but of the environment in general,” adds Lim, who will graduate this May with Wong and the rest of the Iolani senior class. “It’s something that Hawaii is known for, and something we should not take for granted.

“We just want people to look at trees in a different way.”

The Exceptional Trees of Honolulu brochure can be picked up at the Girl Scouts Hale, Foster Botanical Garden, ‘Iolani Palace, Kaulunani Urban Forestry Program, Waikiki and Honolulu libraries, Lyon Arboretum, the UH Botany Department, Nuuanu YMCA, Richards Street YWCA, the Honolulu Zoo and The Outdoor Circle’s main office. An online version also can be downloaded from

To find Exceptional Trees in your own neighborhood and learn what makes them so special, visit

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