A group of local activists has invited the public to take part in “Tree Hugging Day” on Tuesday, September 22nd, the first day of autumn, as a way to express gratitude for trees.

Tree Hugging Day “is a non-partisan and open-to-all simple and loving way for people to show their appreciation and caring for trees and the many aesthetic, environmental and life-giving attributes they provide,” says Jerry Rubin, one of the event’s organizers. Rubin is the founder of Treesavers, a group that formed two years ago to fight the City of Santa Monica’s project to remove ficus trees in downtown.

As part of the September 22nd event, a public “group tree hug” is scheduled from noon to 1 p.m. at Santa Monica’s Palisades Park at the Children’s Tree of Life.

“People of all ages are encouraged to take a moment of time during their work day, school day or leisure day on September 22nd to hug a tree wherever they may be,” the group said in a statement.

Tree Hugging Day organizers say they believe in thinking globally and acting locally, but think it would be positive if participation branches out beyond Santa Monica. The group says that it has received letters of support for the day from the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District Board of Education and the Santa Monica College Board of Trustees.

“We’re very grateful to everyone who has supported us,” said Rubin. “It will be a very special tree appreciation day.”

The event is sponsored by the Alliance for Survival, a peace and environmental group.

Information, www.treehuggingday.com/.