By Mike Kruzman /

A statewide contest is encouraging Livingston County residents to find the largest tree they can.

The 15th biennial Michigan Big Tree Hunt is offering prizes to participants of all ages for identifying the biggest trees in the state. The event was started by the non-profit, ReLeaf Michigan, in 1993 to celebrate the state’s beauty and create a fun way to gather information about the largest trees.

Certificates and awards will be given for the largest tree submitted from each county, for the overall largest tree in different age groups, and for the largest White Pine. Even if the tree submitted is not as large as the currently listed state champion, ReLeaf representatives say it is still important to submit it because the current champion may have died or been removed.

The contest is also a way to discover eligible trees for the National Register of Big Trees, which is updated twice a year by American Forests, the nation’s oldest conservation nonprofit. They track “champion trees” which are the biggest of their species, nationally, reported in a given year. In 2012, Michigan had 23 champion trees, but today is down to one.

More contest details and entry forms are available in the web link below.