What do Kentucky and South Korea have in common? Tree hugging world records, for one thing!
South Korea is the current Guinness World Record holder for treehugging. On 21 March 2015, 1200 people gathered at the National Arboretum in South Korea to hug trees and qualify for as title-holder for the largest tree hug.
But as soon as the documentation is submitted and approved, Kentucky expects to take over the honor. At the Bernheim Big Tree Hug Challenge, an event organized by the Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest, 1416 people took their assigned places to hug a tree while the official count proceeded. According to the invitation to participate "practice tree hug stations" were "set up throughout the region in advance of the event."
In addition to getting their name into the Guinness World Record book, the organizers hope to draw attention to tree species under threat. The Bernheim Arboretum currently hosts a traveling exhibit of Vanishing Acts: Trees Under Threat, an installation created by the Global Trees Campaign in collaboration with The Morton Arboretum to highlight the pressures on the natural diversity of trees.