Local arborist carves out a niche as a competitive tree climber

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- If you're around Kansas City, and you see someone swinging from the trees or jumping from limb to limb, it's likely internationally competitive tree climber Matt Starks.

Starks has competed in multiple regional and local competitions over several years. This is the first time he's advanced all the way to the international competition.

He'll compete against about five dozen other climbers from nearly 20 different countries, but Starks says his passion goes beyond climbing, as an arborist, the trees also intrigue him.

"I try to educate people about the health of their trees and you know the time to trim, and the time to leave them alone," Starks said. "Every day's different, there's no two days the same, and it`s almost instant gratification," said Starks

Starks will compete in the International Tree Climbing Championship in Tampa,Florida March 21st through 22nd.