National Wildlife Refuge System
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Earth Day Events

Young Visitors

Young visitors to San Diego National Wildlife Refuge touch feather specimens from red-tailed hawks, barn owls and other birds on Earth Day 2012.

Credit: Rinus Baak, USFWS

Earth Day is Monday, April 22. Many national wildlife refuges will host Earth Day events in mid-April. Check for additional listings here, using the “Find Your Refuge” feature. Here is a sampling of refuge-based Earth Day events:

Saturday, April 13

  • Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge, UT  
    10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    Sense of Wonder Day is the refuge's family-fun Earth Day celebration. Enjoy free activity stations along Wetland Walk. Immerse yourself in amphibian life cycles. Dip for macroinvertebrates. Take part in animal Olympics. Learn about the magic of migration. More information: 435-723-5887
  • Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, MD
    9 a.m.
    Earth Day Litter Pickup. Help staff and volunteers clean the roads around the refuge and improve the habitat for animals that live on the refuge. Safety vests, gloves, tools and trash bags will be provided. Drinks and snacks are free to volunteers. Please call 410-901-6124 if you would like to participate.  Meet at visitor center.


Saturday, April 20

  • Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, NJ 
    10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    Help plant trees and shrubs and spruce up for spring at the Helen Fenske Visitor Center (32 Pleasant Plains Road, Harding Township). No experience necessary.  More information: 973-425-9510
  • Trinity River National Wildlife Refuge, TX
    11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
    Outdoor activities at the Champion Lake Public Use Area. Enjoy refuge boat tours, canoeing, kayaking, bird and butterfly viewing, walking the levee trail, dip netting and fishing for kids. Bring a lawn chair.
    Admission is free. More information:  936-336-9786.
  • Horicon National Wildlife Refuge, WI  
    Noon to 4 p.m.
    Live amphibians, reptiles, songs, puppets.  Create unique images through photography with Dave Edwards from 11 to 11:45 a.m. Enjoy entertainer and naturalist David Stokes from 1 to 2 p.m.  Then make a simple musical instrument and join in a sing-a-long.
    More information:  920-387-2658 ext. 24
  • Elizabeth Hartwell Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge, VA
    10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    Mason Neck Eagle Festival. Enjoy musical performances, live animal shows, hayrides, food, canoe tours, guided hikes and educational displays and activities. Tour a heron rookery and birdwatch with biologists. Admission and parking are free.  More information: 703-490-4979
  • Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge, DE
    1 to 4 p.m.
    Highway Cleanup. Celebrate spring and Earth Day by cleaning roads leading to the refuge. Bring your gloves and wear shoes that can get wet. Homemade refreshments will be served after the cleanup. Meet at the visitor center. More information: 302-653-6872
  • Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge, WV
    9 a.m.
    Red Spruce planting today and Sunday, April 21. Meet at the refuge visitor center. Learn why we are restoring red spruce in our forest and then help us plant trees. Wear sturdy shoes and bring water and gloves, if desired. Lunch will be provided. More information: 304-866-3858, ext.32.
  • Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge, CT
    1:30 p.m.
    Salt Meadow Unit, Westbrook
    Join ranger Shaun Roche and biologist Kris Vagos to learn how Americans have been connected and disconnected from their land. See how New Englanders have used the land for farming, fishing and hunting and look for evidence of human uses that can still be seen on refuge land. More information: 860-399-2513

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Last updated: March 27, 2013