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LeRoy Collins Library Losing Its Live Oak

LeRoy Collins Library Live Oak
Posted at 5:33 AM, Jan 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-14 01:06:36-05

LEON CO., Fla. (WTXL) -- The LeRoy Collins Public Library is losing its live oak.

Officials say the health of the tree has declined, and there are some safety concerns for people using the parking lot.

They looked at other ways to preserve the tree, but experts advised immediate removal.

That is set for happen on Monday, January 18 when the Main Library is closed for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. No library hours or services will be affected.

 "It is with great regret that we remove the live oak tree because it has witnessed so much of our community's history," said Cay Hohmeister, director of Leon County Public Libraries, in a release. "County librarians are available to answer questions about the tree and its history."

A portion of the live oak will be memorialized by a local sculptor next month.

According to library officials, John Birch will carving remaining sections of the live oak itself to memorialize the tree and the history it has witnessed. Later in the year, new "green" improvements will be made to the area around the tree site, which could include new tree plantings and landscaping.

That ceremony is set for Saturday, February 13 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m., as part of the 25th anniversary of the LeRoy Collins Leon County Main Library.