8 ways to celebrate Earth Day locally

This year, Earth Day falls on Saturday, April 22nd, offering families the perfect opportunity to get outside and celebrate together.Though you probably don’t need an official study to tell you this, research shows that spending time in nature is essential for kids (and adults!).

It has been shown to reduce stress, ease anxiety, improve concentration, boost the immune system, increase creativity, and even decrease kids’ chances of becoming near-sighted.

And of course, it’s just fun!

Here are some events happening locally to mark the occasion with your kids:

1. Earth Day of Service at the Urban Ecology Center

Saturday, April 22

All three locations

It’s a working celebration of the Earth! Bring your friends and spend a morning helping in Three Bridges Park followed by a community Lunch. Meet new people and have fun helping the earth.

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2. Make seed bombs that grow anywhere at the Urban Ecology Center

Saturday, April 22nd

Seed bombs – balls of compost, clay and seeds – are the perfect way to spread native plant species to spaces that need life and color. Create your own seed bombs to plant this spring. All materials provided. For families.

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3. Earth Day at Mequon Nature Preserve

Saturday, April 22

1:00-3:00 p.m.

Mequon Nature Preserve

8200 W County Line Rd, Mequon, Wisconsin 53097

A free Earth Day event for families and people of all ages – Kohl’s Wild Theater will perform Aldo Leopold and the Sand County Ghost. As a gift from our sponsor – Stein’s Garden & Home – guests can also participate in seed plantings and crafts.

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4. Great American Cleanup at Havenwoods State Forest

Saturday, April 22

9:00 a.m. – noon

Make your part of the earth a little cleaner this spring by picking up litter on streets, in parks, and along waterways. Join us to clean up Havenwoods! We’ll provide garbage bags and work gloves. Litter picker-uppers will receive gift certificates from local sponsors! Registration is requested for groups.

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5. Earth Day Hikes at Wehr Nature Center (Ages 3 and up)

Saturday, April 22

10 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. & 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Wehr Nature Center, 9701 W College Ave, Franklin, WI 53132, USA (map)

Enjoy guided spring hikes in honor of Earth Day. Learn about the fascinating connections between people, plants, and animals that make Wehr Nature Center such a special place. Pick up some simple tips along the way to make everyday Earth Day! Recommended for children age 3 and up. No reservations required. Parking fee applies.

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6. Great Whitnall Park Cleanup

Saturday, April 22

9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Wehr Nature Center, 9701 W College Ave, Franklin, WI 53132

Join the nation-wide efforts to “Keep America Beautiful” by helping to cleanup litter at Wehr Nature Center and throughout Whitnall Park. Volunteers are asked to check in at Wehr Nature Center at 9 am to receive their clean-up assignment. Bags are provided; please bring your own gloves. Pre-registration is requested, but not required.

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7. Earth Day Work Day at Schlitz Audubon Nature Center

Saturday, April 22

2:00pm – 4:00pm

Help us honor, celebrate, and work to better the Earth on Earthday! Become citizen scientists and collect litter from the shoreline to record our findings with the Alliance for the Great Lakes. We’ll also find out more about the mystery snails in Mystery Lake and the impact they have on the habitat.

Pre-registration is required. To register call 414-352-2880 x0.

Free to all!

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8. Earth Day Service Fest & Family Festival

Riveredge nature center (4458 County Hwy Y, Saukville, WI 53080)

Join Riveredge and celebrate Earth Day right by working hand in hand with Riveredge staff on fun, informative service projects that give back to both the planet and our community! From preparing and planting cool garden beds in their children’s organic garden to conducing grounds clean-up and invasive species removal to trail maintenance, there’s awesome opportunities for groups, families, and individuals of all ages to get involved and make a difference.

The day is free and as a special thank you, all volunteers will receive a free lunch at noon and a free family festival starting at 11:30am. Everyone is invited to make a nesting bag for birds, experience a composting demonstration, and play in the great outdoors. Our friends from the Museum of Quilts & Fiber Arts will be joining us to lead everyone in their very own creation of a tin-can planter! Walk-ins are welcome and the event is totally free, but registering us recommended.

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Or, visit a State Park within one hour of Milwaukee. Check out our list.

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