Since its inception in 1970, Earth Day continues to grow as a worldwide experience focused on promoting clean living and living in a healthy, sustainable habitat for people and wildlife. Celebrating Earth Day serves as a collective, conscious memento of how vulnerably charming our planet is across all terrestrial ecosystems. Parks and places serve as a community not only to the surrounding environment, but for everyone to enjoy respectfully within Mother Nature’s presence. Here are four parks and places to embrace and celebrate Earth Day and be one with nature at any time:
Experience the tranquility of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater on Earth Day (or book a reservation on your next day off!). A quick road trip, Fallingwater is only a one-and-a-half-hour drive from Pittsburgh, located in the beating heart of the Laurel Highlands wilderness on the 5,100-acre Bear Run Nature Reserve.
Built over a waterfall and tucked into the hillside and the forested landscape, Fallingwater is a symbol of people living in harmony with nature. Visitors can experience Fallingwater through outdoor-only experiences for a limited time by booking a reservation for a self-guided exterior experience, guided exterior private tour, or family field trip. Plus, beginning in May, Fallingwater will offer a Brunch Tour, Sunset Tour, and Focus Tours.
Outdoor enthusiasts can explore the Bear Run Nature Reserve’s 28 miles of hiking trails, which are free to the public. Activities include hiking, camping, birdwatching, fishing, and hunting by permit.
Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
Explore and do good while you’re at it! Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy will have ways to protect and honor the planet this Earth Day and beyond. Whether it’s litter picking in the parks, registering for a virtual event, or restoring each park’s system by donation, there are multiple avenues to enjoy its bountiful beauty. Check out its full schedule of virtual and in-person events online for Earth Day (and any day, really).
Plus, enjoy its systems of natural sanctuaries with six regional parks, plus more ways to explore new areas with a parks overview and map. And as parks thrive on care and protection, so do donations that help sprout capital projects, plant trees, and expand research possibilities. Park lovers can donate directly here.
Allegheny County Parks
Celebrate Earth Day at the Allegheny County Parks and help leave its trails better than you found them! Hike enthusiasts can hop on the Parks Trails Mobile App to discover trails within each Allegheny County Park, and stay on the trails to avoid habitat fragmentation. Each trail is noted by length, difficulty, and elevation. And there’s a ton of trails to choose from including the parks at Boyce, Deer Lakes, Harrison Hills, Hartwood Acres, North, Round Hill, Settlers Cabin, South, or White Oak. These woodland trails have plenty of opportunities to help conserve the environment while enjoying the best of what Mother Nature has to offer. If you see a lying piece of trash, be sure to pick it up!
Plus, stay tuned for Movies in the Park! Springtime movie night commences at Settlers Cabin or Boyce Park for its Family Drive-in Movie Series. Check out the entire movie schedule for Boyce Park or Settlers Cabin that includes guidelines, movies, and general information. You might as well download these free coloring pages while you’re at it!
Pittsburgh Botanic Gardens
Earth Day lasts all week at the Pittsburgh Botanic Gardens. On Saturday, April 24, bring the entire family to soak in some sprouting greenery and its oasis-like surroundings to celebrate Earth day! The Pittsburgh Botanic Gardens will host The Young Artists in the Garden program from 10 am-noon in the Garden of the Five Senses.
Kids of all ages can make Earth Day crafts with coffee filters and color some Earth Day themed coloring pages. This program is included with admission as an added perk! The Garden of Five Senses also allows visitors to discover what is living in a log, see plants through the kaleidoscope, find Mr. Fox, or create joyful sounds on the marimba- all using each of your senses, of course!
Pittsburgh Botanic Gardens has 60 acres of gardens and woodlands to explore. Be sure to check out its spring and summer hours along with its affordable admission costs. Want to become a member and experience the garden benefits all year-round? Select your membership level here!This content was provided by a local, independent contributor to Made in PGH, a lifestyle blog.