15 Easy Ways to Celebrate Earth Day

We celebrate holidays for almost everything, from paying tribute to our past presidents to indulging in some serious shopping frenzy (hello, Black Friday!). So, why not give Mother Earth her own special day too? It's only fair, right? Every year on April 22nd, Earth Day is celebrated globally. According to Wikipedia, “Earth Day is an annual event…on which day events worldwide are held to demonstrate support for environmental protection. It was first celebrated in 1970 and is now coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network and celebrated in more than 193 countries each year.” So how can you show your support? 

  1. Keep your car in the garage. This Earth Day give your car the day off. Plan to find a more ecofriendly mode of transportation to get where you need to be. If you can then walk, ride your bike, take the bus or train, rollerblade, or skateboard to your destination! Even carpooling helps to keep the pollution to a minimum.
  2. Clean up after your pet. Pet waste contains bacteria that, if not cleaned-up properly, can be absorbed by runoff and find its way into rivers and streams. Bonus: proper clean-up will help avoid an eventual and unpleasant reminder to pick up after Rover. 
  3. Volunteer! Put effort into making the world a better place and helping the environment by volunteering your time to local or national organizations. There are usually local activities going on as well so find out how you can help. Helping others and our earth also makes you feel good, which can help reduce stress and anxiety. 
  4. Cut down on paper. Save millions of trees a year by switching all your bills to e-bills and online invoices. This also helps to de-clutter your living space so you can keep a calm balance in your home environment. 
  5. Educate yourself. Get to know more about what you can do to protect the environment. Take a walk to the library, do an online search, and/or talk to local organizations to better inform yourself. You will then be able to use that knowledge and share it with others. That, in the long run, can make a big difference. 
  6. Recycle. If you already have this practice in place, start looking into what you must expand what you’re recycling. The EPA and other agencies suggest that electronic waste (aka e-waste) is the fastest growing waste stream in the world. Take all your old electronic gadgets or appliances that are gathering dust and find out where to properly recycle them. Use this EPA list to locate a responsible e-waste recycler in your area, and let your neighbors know that you'll be happy to take their stuff in with you. 
  7. Reduce runoff. Stormwater flows unhindered across hard surfaces and into storm drains. The flow of water picks up pollutants along the way. Integrate porous materials—or a rain garden—in your landscape to reduce runoff where possible. 
  8. Minimize chemical use. Eliminate or reduce the use of chemicals. Chemicals from households and farms, not properly recycled, can runoff into area waterways. The internet is populated with organic solutions, pet and human friendly. If you must use chemicals, dispose of them properly. Hazardous material including motor oil, paints and medications should be properly disposed of. Most communities offer weekend disposal events just for this purpose. 
  9. Plant a tree. Trees are a big part of our earth that is rapidly declining due to housing and construction. This is taking away much needed oxygen from our atmosphere that is needed for our inhabitants to breathe as well as keeping a thriving ecosystem. Planting one tree will add to the health and wellness of the world we live in. 
  10. Go to a local event. A lot of communities will have an “Earth Day fair” or other event that your family can learn from and enjoy together. 
  11. Get a reusable water bottle. There are plenty of alternatives to bottled water out there. Besides saving a lot of plastic that would, otherwise, be filling up landfills and dumps, you’ll be saving money! 
  12. Create a wildlife refuge or an oasis for birds and other creatures in your yard. On Earth Day you can start your plans to put in a pond, bird feeder, install birdhouses, put in a birdbath, and more. As we have mentioned in other blogs, using your pond as a natural wildlife refuge brings animals right to your backyard. All types of animals gravitate towards water and depending on your location, you can see wild birds, raccoons, turtles, frogs, butterflies, and dragonflies as well as all underwater life. These critters will call the pond home, making it an interesting and enjoyable environment for family and friends. Observing these animals can also be a great way to decompress after a long day. 
  13. Start your own garden in your yard. This can help kids learn about the environment and start to fall in love with nature while also being a lot of fun. Planting food is a cost effective and ecofriendly way to celebrate our planet every day. This Earth Day, make a goal to plant one thing that can be eaten by your family. Maybe it's just a few basil plants, or maybe it's an entire garden. Put it on your windowsill, your fire escape, or your kitchen wall. 
  14. Make your voice heard. If you are concerned about legislation at the state or national level when it comes to the environment, then contact your government officials. Write an email or letter to your representative, senator, or any appropriate government agency that you can to talk to about your environmental concerns and/or who can create policies. 
  15. Get outside! Earth Day is about enjoying and taking care of the planet so do something that gets you in touch with nature and that helps to remind you exactly why it’s important to put so much time, effort, and energy into preserving it. Earth is an amazing, beautiful place to explore. Go on a hike, hang out by your pond, take a nature walk with your kids, have a picnic in the park, or play a game of kickball with your friends. Remember how great it feels to breathe in fresh air and feel the breeze and warm sun on your face! 

These are just a few awesome ideas for celebrating Earth Day! And guess what? You can incorporate them into your everyday routine to give our planet a little love, 365 days a year!