By Annie Regan
Earth Day is an annual event celebrated on April 22nd to support the preservation of our environment. It was first held on April 22, 1970, which later manifested the creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency of that same year.
An estimated 20 million people nationwide attended the inaugural events at tens of thousands of sites including elementary and secondary schools, universities, and communities across the United States. This included various teach-ins, which helped educate and mobilize citizens across the county to demand that Congress act to protect the environment.
53 years later since this monumental event, the world has changed quite a bit, but some things have stayed the same. We like to think our webinars and listening sessions act in a similar fashion to the original teach-ins, educating Appalachians on environmental issues, economic findings, and innovative technologies that can be transformative to the region.
This year’s official theme for Earth Day is “Invest In Our Planet,” but we would like to specifically call to “Invest in Appalachia.” We’ve come a long way since 1970, but we still have a lot more work to do to make sure Appalachia gets a seat at the table for national conversations around climate infrastructure investments!
You can find a wide range of events coordinated globally by EARTHDAY.org in more than 193 countries. But we wanted to highlight a few events happening in the region for your convenience! We also curated an Earth Day Playlist you can listen to as you plan your festivities!
Earth Day events happening in Appalachia
Want to celebrate but don’t know where to start?
We got your back! Here’s a short list of some of the environmental events happening in Appalachia this Earth Month! From virtual to in-person events, there’s surely something for everyone. Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to add an event happening that could use a little promotion!
Pittsburgh Earth Day at Market Square
- Pennsylvania Parks and Forest Foundation– all happening on Saturday, April 22nd
- Friends of Greenwood Furnace: Whipple Dam Spruce Up Day– Whipple Dam State Park
- Friends of Pine Grove Furnace: Earth Day Volunteer Day– Pine Grove Furnace State Park
- Friends of Laurel Hill: Earth Day Volunteer Day– Laurel Hill State Park
- Friends of R.B. Winter – Spring (Earth Day) Clean-Up– R.B. Winter State Park
- Friends of Michaux: Earth Day Hearth Tender Workday– Michaux State Forest
- Friends of Beltzville: Family Nature Hike for Earth Day– Beltzville State Park
- Senator Casey has a few webinars coming up
- Friday, April 21st at 10am ET: EPA Webinar: Sustainable Food Management
- Friday, April 21st at 2pm ET: Department of Energy Webinar: Clean Energy Tax Credits for Consumers
- Friday, April 21st at 3pm: USDA Webinar: Water Quality, Soil Health, and Habitat Development
- Earth Day Tree Planting at Oasis Farm and Fishery– hosted by our partners at Grounded Strategies!
- Saturday, April 22nd at Oasis Farm and Fishery (7238 Fleury Way Pittsburgh, PA 15208)
- Join Grounded Strategies and Oasis Farm and Fishery in continued beautification efforts of the Nook Project on Kelly Street in Homewood next to the Kaboom playground. We need your support to plant trees, flowers, etc. to make this a great place to rest and play for years to come.
- We will provide you with gloves, tools, sunscreen and bug-spray, and the instruction needed to get the job done. Come prepared with long pants and sturdy closed-toe shoes. We recommend bringing extra sun protection, such as hats and sunglasses, and a reusable water bottle.
- Carnegie Mellon University Electric Car Show
- Saturday, April 22nd at 11am-1pm ET located at Morewood Gardens Parking Lot (4902 Forbes Avenue Pittsburgh, PA 15213)
- Join us on Earth Day, April 22, to meet other CMU faculty, staff, and students and learn about electric vehicles (EVs)! We will have roughly a dozen EVs on-site accompanied by their owners (CMU faculty and staff), who will be available to talk about their experiences with them.
- Earth Day Youth Pittsburgh Climate Party– Led by Pittsburgh Sunrise Movement
- Friday, April 21st at 2pm at City County Building (414 Grant Street)
- Hilton Farm Earth Day Celebration
- Saturday, April 22nd at 10am-4pm at Hilton Farm (located at 1048 Smithfield New Geneva Road Smithfield, PA 15478)
- Seed bomb workshop for community garden
- Saturday, April 22, 1pm-3pm located at Wilkes-Barre Community Garden (445 S. River Street, Wilkes-Barre, PA)
- A seed bomb workshop with The Nanticoke Little Free Pantry is open to all ages.
- Local Perspectives on Water Quality Virtual Panel – Water is the Erie Region’s greatest asset
- Wednesday, April 26 at 4:30pm: Local Perspectives on Water Quality Virtual Panel – Water is the Erie Region’s greatest asset
- Protecting the abundant freshwater resources in our backyards remains a complex challenge. Asbury Woods and PennFuture are teaming up to host a panel discussion featuring representatives from Pennsylvania Lake Erie Watershed Association, Master Watershed Stewards, Lake Erie Region Conservancy, and Trout Unlimited.
- Tree Planting at the Lake Erie Arboretum at Frontier Park ReLeaf
- Saturday, April 29 8:30am-12:00pm located at Lake Erie Arboretum @ Frontier Park ReLeaf (1501 W 6th St, Erie, PA 16505) & Blasco Memorial Library (160 E Front St, Erie, PA 16507)
- In recognition of Earth Day and Arbor Day, the Urban Forest Committee of the City of Erie and the Lake Erie Arboretum’s tree-growing project, ReLeaf, are sponsoring—together with partners Our West Bayfront, BEST, Erie Downtown, and the Erie County Library—a community-wide tree planting, to be celebrated through social media and on line postings. A wide selection of trees will be available at no cost. Participants are asked to plant a tree and share a photo or video of their work via social media, with the hashtag #arbordayerie
- Webinar on Environmental Justice: Why It Matters to Everyone
- Monday, April 24, 6pm-8pm via Zoom
- Put on by the League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania, the LWVPA Environmental Policy Committee and Director Kathy Cook will lead a discussion about Environmental Justice. Access to a breathable, livable and safe environment is a fundamental right of every Pennsylvanian. This is a privilege enjoyed by some yet inaccessible to others.
- Rally to Protect Upper Cheat Headwaters
- Friday, April 21st at 4 pm located at Courthouse Square, 243 High Street, Morgantown, WV
- Stop the clearcuts. Stop the flooding. Join community members on Friday, April 21, for a rally to publicly demonstrate our support for protecting some of the last remaining mature and old-growth trees in the Monongahela National Forest!
- Earth Day 2023 at Sam Michael’s Park
- Saturday, April 22nd at 8:00 am – 2:00 pm at Sam Michael’s Park located in Harper’s Ferry, WV
- A variety of activities will be scheduled throughout the day, including bird and nature walks, a rain barrel workshop, and even a rain garden planting! This will be a family friendly event with activities from for kids and adults to explore the wonder of nature here in own our backyard.
- Earth Day Watershed Celebration
- Saturday, April 22nd at 2pm-8pm at Lost World Caverns, Lewisburg, WV
- Free cave tours, kids activities, live music, silent auction and food for purchase. A mini macroinvertebrate workshop/display will be presented by Callie Sams, WVDEP Save Our Streams Program, as well as our own GRWA educational materials available for discussion and take home.
- Touch the Earth Festival
- Saturday, April 22nd from 1pm-4pm at the pavilion in Marilla Park, Morgantown, WV
- The Festival will feature fun educational activities, including a trail-building workshop in which participants will help complete work on Marilla Park’s signature trail. Other activities will include a guided tour of the park’s trails and small wetland, a tree-planting party, a crash course in invasive-species identification and removal, and a scavenger hunt in which participants will identify local flora. Trees on the trail route will have signage with information about their ecological and financial benefits, particularly as they relate to easing the adverse effects of climate change
- Earth Day Farm Fest
- Saturday, April 22nd from 10am-3pm at Wardensville Garden Market
- Help us celebrate our beautiful planet by spending the day outside and meeting your neighbors. We’ll have some important conservancy groups joining us, along with incredible food, live music, farm tours, a wild weed walk, a kid’s zone, and more! Make sure you join us on Saturday, April 22nd, from 10AM-3PM for this FREE EVENT for the whole family.
- Earth Day Celebration! @ Appalachian South Folklife Center
- Saturday, April 23, 2022 at 11:00am — 11:00pm at the Appalachian South Folklife Center
- Join us for a beautiful day of activity and celebration honoring Mother Earth featuring music performances, special demonstrations, discussions, craft activities and more at the beautiful ASFC.
- Earth Day Block Party
- Saturday, April 22nd at 1pm-6pm located at Wheeling Heritage Port (Wheeling Heritage Port, 1201 Water Street, Wheeling, WV)
- Plant/Seed Swap, Exhibitors, Vendors, Music, and Games
- City Park Earth Day, Elkins, WV
- Saturday, April 22nd at noon- 2pm located at Elkins City Park
- Kid’s Crafts / Displays / Hands on Activities / Games / Photo & Poster Winners / Free Giveaways
- Fair Shake Earth Day- Parkersburg Ambassador Community
- Saturday, April 29th at 10am- 4pm at Parkersburg and Wood County Library
- Join Fair Shake as a Community Ambassador to: Engage and network with neighbors, Discover how decisions are made about the places you live, work, and play, and Take action to drive the vision!
- Berea College Earth Day Celebration
- Friday, April 21st- April 23rd from 11am- 3:30 pm located at Forestry Outreach Center (2047 Big Hill Rd., Berea, KY)
- A multi-day campus-wide celebration of Earth Day with Student Life and the Office of Sustainability! Sustain our Earth, sustain our communities, sustain ourselves.
- Berea Earth Warriors Concert Series: Nurtured By Nature
- Friday, April 21st- Saturday, April 22nd from 4pm-11pm located at OwlEyes Farm (10981 Battlefield Memorial Highway Berea, KY 40403)
- Calling all music lovers and activists! Join us for the Berea Earth Warriors Concert Series, a two-day celebration of music, community, and environmental activism! Featuring an incredible lineup of talented musicians and artists from a variety of genres, the Berea Earth Warriors Concert Series is a can’t-miss event for anyone who cares about the planet and wants to make a difference. From funky beats to emotional ballads, from folk-pop to hard-rock, there’s something for everyone at this amazing concert series!
- Berea Earth Day Gathering
- U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Earth Day Celebration
- Saturday, April 22nd at 9am- 1pm at Wolf Creek National Fish Hatchery in Jamestown, Kentucky
- Join us Saturday April 22, 2023 for our annual Earth Day event! A variety of agencies and organizations will be set up at the hatchery providing participants of all ages resources for learning, giveaways, and fun. Some of the activities include Liberty Nature Center with birds of prey, Trout Unlimited fly tyers, blow-up archery, Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife discussing mammals, and Friends of Wolf Creek National Fish Hatchery, Inc. will be giving out pecan and white oak saplings!
- Barnyard Fun: Happy Earth Day
- Saturday, April 22nd at 10 am located at Oldham County History Center (106 N 2nd Avenue St., La Grange, KY)
- Join us Saturday from 10AM to Noon at a special Barnyard Fun program to celebrate Earth Day! This will be a sneak-peek of the Barnyard Fun programming that officially kicks off on May 13. Free to the public!
- Earth Day Prayer for E. Palestine
- Saturday, April 22nd at 3pm on Zoom
- We invite clergy and lay leaders and environmental advocates to participate in our webinar to get the latest information on the situation in East Palestine and to discuss actions we can take going forward to aid East Palestinians and to bring about the reforms needed to keep our communities safe.
- In Person: Kids as Planet Protectors: An Earth Day Celebration
- Saturday, April 22nd at 10am
- we will have multiple projects to help kids take action in protecting our environment and investing in our planet’s future. Activities will include: nature-themed art exhibits, wildflower seed balls, bird seed feeders for Ohio Wildlife Center, tree planting,* learning about composting and renewable energy, upcycling activities, a scavenger hunt, window clings to prevent bird strikes, and more.
- Earth Day at OH WOW Science Center!
- Saturday, April 22nd at 9am at OH WOW Science Center (15 Central Square, Youngstown, OH)
- Wild You: Earth Day Cleanup
- Saturday, April 22nd at 10am located at Lower Bears Den Picnic Area in Youngstown, OH
- Celebrate Earth Day by helping us clean up Bears Den Run in Mill Creek MetroParks. This is a small creek that flows through the Bears Den area. Gloves, bags and some grabbers will be provided. Boots recommended.
- Earth Day Beautification
- Saturday, April 22nd at 8am located at Choffin Career & Technical Center (200 E. Wood Street, Youngstown ,OH)
- Can you help by beautifying with a crew of Choffin students to help beautify the campus and the hillside between Wood and Commerce Sts? We need some extra hands and tools such as loppers and other clippers to make a big impact! We’ll pick up litter and trim back the overgrowth. Gloves and some tools will be provided but please consider bringing your own!
- Athens, Ohio Litter Cleanup
- Saturday, April 22nd at 9am
- The Athens Lions Club will be holding a litter pickup service project as part of the Ohio Department of Transportation Adopt-A-Highway program. A brief safety orientation will be provided immediately prior to the event, and then the group will divide into teams to pick up litter along the route. Gloves and reflective vests will be available, along with trash bags, buckets and “Grabbers.” After completing the route, each team will reassemble at the AEP Parking Lot for a debrief.
- Athens, Ohio Earth Day Parade
- Saturday, April 22nd at South Green Basketball Court