Your Guide to Earth Day Events and Volunteering Around Philly

From volunteering to shopping to kids’ activities, there’s something for everyone in Philly looking to celebrate Earth Day.

earth day phs

PHS is hosting Earth Day volunteer opportunities with the goal to plant 1,400 trees. / Photograph courtesy of Pennsylvania Horticultural Society

Earth Day is Saturday, April 22nd, and there are plenty of ways to celebrate around town. From sustainability-focused organizations to volunteer with to interactive, kid-friendly parties to toast to the planet, we’ve rounded up ways you can help make Philly a little greener this week.

Drexel Earthfest
Drexel’s free annual Earth Day block party takes place along Lancaster Walk, and includes games, giveaways, food, biking resources, and information and demonstrations from organizations focused on environmental sustainability.
April 19th, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Drexel University (Lancaster Walk and the Gateway Garden, spanning 32nd and 34th streets and Market and Arch streets).

Earth Day Children’s Read-Aloud at Brandywine River Museum
Part of Longwood Gardens’ Community Read program, the Brandywine River Museum hosts morning story time and craft for young children and their families. First, listen to Bring Me Some Apples and I’ll Make You a Pie: A Story About Edna Lewis, then find nature-themed art in the galleries and go outside to explore native trees and plants. The morning will conclude with a nature-themed craft to complete and take home. Advance registration is required online. The event is free for members, and $5 for non-members.
April 20th, 10:30 a.m., Brandywine River Museum of Art, 1 Hoffman’s Mill Road, Chadds Ford.

Earth Weekend at Academy of Natural Sciences
The museum is celebrating all weekend long with family-friendly science programming. There will be live animal encounters, craft activities (including a bird-puppet-making workshop and parade with artists Yvonne Lung and Eurhi Jones), storytelling and more. All activities are included with admission.
April 21st-23rd, Academy of Natural Sciences, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

Naturepalooza at the Schuylkill Center
The Schuylkill Center’s annual, all-ages Earth Day celebration includes nature hikes, food trucks, and nature-themed art and activities. Plus, the Billy Jonas Band will provide live music using recycled and found objects. Free; online registration (and optional donation) encouraged.
April 22nd, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, 8480 Hagy’s Mill Road.

Be My Neighbor Day at Smith Playground
Smith Memorial Playground will host Be My Neighbor Day — and if that name hasn’t tipped you off already, the day includes a visit from Daniel Tiger, along with eco-activities with the Academy of Natural Sciences. Pre-register online.
April 22nd, noon-2 p.m. Smith Memorial Playground and Playhouse, 3500 Reservoir Drive.

Awbury Arboretum’s Forest & Farm Fair
This fun-filled, all-ages day includes tree plantings, kids’ activities, a concert, Philly Goat Project goat walks, a plant sale and so much more. The day concludes with a sunset picnic and firepit (BYO food), and is free to attend.
April 22nd, 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Awbury Arboretum, 1 Awbury Road.

things to do with kids in winter

Goats at Awbury Arboretum / Photograph by Rachael Warriner

Birds of a Feather
Join TTF Watershed for their annual “Birds of a Feather” to Celebrate Trails and Earth Day. There will be hands-on nature and water activities, and watch as V.U.R.T Creative refreshes the bird murals along the Tacony Creek Park trail.
April 22nd, noon-4 p.m., Tacony Creek Park, Whitaker Avenue and Loudon Street.

Ecotherapy in the Park: Guided Hike and Meditation
Meet at the Belmont Plateau, where co-founder of Philadelphia Ecotherapy, Nate Schlingmann, will lead a special Earth Day guided two-and-a-half-mile hike and meditation. “Our journey will lead us to several small tributary creeks, where we will spread out in seated positions at water’s edge, and collectively meditate accompanied by the reassuring rhythmic sounds of the flowing water. We will join in with the sound of the creek with our own spontaneous humming and whistling and in this way, show our love for the water.” Pre-register online.
April 22nd, 3-5:30 p.m., meet at Belmont Plateau.

Elmwood Park Zoo’s Party for the Planet
Zoo attendees can participate in demonstrations and education stations featuring animals, recycling, sustainable living and more. Eco-friendly items will also be available to purchase from vendors throughout the zoo. Free with zoo admission.
April 22nd and 23rd, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Elmwood Park Zoo, 1661 Harding Boulevard, Norristown.

Kids@Play at Gold Star Park
Kids can listen to story time, plus decorate containers and plant seeds to take home. There will also be a plant giveaway and a sneaker-recycling drive.
April 22nd, 10 a.m.-noon, Gold Star Park, 613 Wharton Street.

Spring Fling Market at Sor Ynéz
A dozen local, environmentally minded artists from the Keepin’ It Small collective — including Ray’s Reusables, Greenly Plant Co and Bird & Brush Art — will gather at Sor Ynéz’s patio for a marketplace on Earth Day. Additionally, Otto Distilling will be mixing their spirits for a special Spring Fling cocktail, and the restaurant will be featuring a new brunch menu.
April 22nd, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Sor Ynéz, 1800 North American Street.

Sor Ynéz patio / Photograph by Neal Santos

Earth Day Indigo Dye Workshop
InLiquid, Fabric Workshop and Museum, and Marafiki Arts team up for a hands-on fabric art workshop. Learn about the history and basic process of natural, organic indigo-dyeing, then try it yourself. Bring a garment to repurpose and upcycle, so you can transform your textiles for some unique sustainable fashion. Free; pre-register online.
April 22nd, 1-3 p.m., InLiquid Gallery, Crane Arts Building, 1400 North American Street.

Grant Blvd Flagship Grand Opening Party
Kimberly McGlonn‘s sustainable, ethically focused brand Grant Blvd is moving its flagship to University City and celebrating with an Earth Day party. The mission-driven company has B Corp status, and are committed to using sustainably sourced fabrics, including deconstructing and reconstructing used fabrics and deadstock textiles. It’s the “necessary future of fashion design,” McGlonn tells me. On Saturday, get a first look at the new space and clothing line, and enjoy treats from Cake Life, DJ music, and reusable cups from the sustainable company Earth Cups.
April 22nd, noon-6 p.m., Grant Blvd, 140 South 34th Street.

Earth Day at the Insectarium
Visit the Philadelphia Insectarium and Butterfly Pavilion for a day celebrating the planet. During the day, there will be various activity stations, including seed-bomb-making, creating jewelry with real butterfly wings, and face-painting for the kids. Then at night, there’s an adults-only party with an open bar, wildlife encounters, and entertainment — dress code is “jungle chic.” Tickets are available online for both events.
April 22nd, 8046 Frankford Avenue.

Rock and Roll Playhouse presents the Music of Bob Marley for Kids
Celebrate enjoy a kid-friendly concert at Brooklyn Bowl as Jah People brings the music of Bob Marley with a side of fun (think glow-sticks, freeze-dance games and a parachute). Food and drinks will be available during the concert, and you can stick around for Family Bowl at 1 p.m. The event will benefit international nonprofit Oceanic Global.
April 22nd, noon, Brooklyn Bowl Philly, 1009 Canal Street.

Go Green Day at King of Prussia Mall
Meet at the Cafe Court to learn about sustainability and Sephora’s initiative with the Pact Collective (they’ll accept and recycle your used beauty packaging!). Plus, the first 100 guests will be able to make their own air plant terrarium.
April 22nd, 1-3 p.m., Cafe Court at King of Prussia Mall, 160 North Gulph Road, King of Prussia.

Everyday Futures Fest Block Party
Da Vinci Art Alliance’s annual community arts and science festival runs through April with exhibits, workshops and interactive experiences focusing on sustainability and the arts. While there is plenty to see and do, definitely don’t miss out on the block party on April 23rd. The festival will take over the 700 block of Catharine Street with temporary installations, sustainable vendors, performances and art activities for all ages. Check out the rest of the Everyday Futures Fest schedule here.
April 23rd, noon-5 p.m., Catherine Street between 7th and 8th streets.

Family Earth Day at the American Swedish Historical Museum
Families can participate in free sustainable activities on the terrace of the museum: Learn about composting, get creative with recycled crafts, relax in the green books story nook and make starter plantings. This drop-in program is outdoors, and admission is free.
April 23rd, 2-4 p.m., 1900 Pattison Avenue.

Live More Marketplace at Cherry Street Pier
Curated by Cherry Street Pier resident artist organization (and Best of Philly winner) Walls for Justice, this market showcase handmade and locally sourced goods from small businesses, artisans and community organizations to promote sustainable living.
April 23rd, noon-7 p.m., Cherry Street Pier, 121 North Columbus Boulevard.

Penn State Master Gardener Plant Sale and Garden Day
If you’re looking to make your life greener, visit the Fairmount Park Horticulture Center to shop hundreds of varieties of plants, and stick around for the activities. The day is free and includes tours of the greenhouse and Master Gardener gardens (including a pollinator garden and the Food Forest in partnership with the Philadelphia Orchard Project), free interactive gardening demos, and kids’ crafts (including screen printing with natural dyes and flower bombs). You can also meet master gardeners and other organizations to learn tips for better gardening and sustainability practices. The theme this year is “Gardens: Habitats for All,” celebrating the many creatures live in gardens.
April 30th, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., The Fairmount Park Horticulture Center, 100 North Horticultural Drive. 

NarbEarth Day
Narberth’s annual environmental fair in Narberth Park includes live music, fun and games for all ages, healthy food vendors, green products and services from local businesses and a used book sale from the Narberth Library. Plus, reduce your waste footprint by buying or swapping used household items, kids’ clothes, toys, and perennial plants.
May 6th, noon-4 p.m., Narberth Park, 80 Windsor Avenue, Narberth.

More Volunteer Opportunities

Photograph courtesy of PHS

PHS Tree Tenders Spring Planting
The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, alongside PHS Tree Tender groups and neighborhood volunteers, will celebrate Earth Day by promoting healthier, greener communities with their semi-annual tree planting from April 20th-24th throughout Greater Philadelphia. Their goal this spring is to plant 1,400 trees, so they definitely could use your help. Sign up online to volunteer — no experience is necessary — and pick a location and date. Tree plantings generally last three hours. Dress for the weather and bring hand sanitizer, gloves, close-toed shoes, a water bottle, and a shovel if you have one. Supplies for plantings will be available onsite.
April 20th-24th, multiple locations.

Fishtown Neighbors Association Earth Day
Pitch in to help the neighborhood with trash cleanup or a “kindness rocks” art project. Trash grabbers, brooms, and trash bags will be distributed at Fishtown Rec Center starting at 10 a.m. — then return your supplies by noon and mark off the streets you cleaned.
April 22nd, 10 a.m.-noon, Fishtown Rec Center, 1235 East Palmer Street, and throughout the neighborhood.

Sort-a-Thon at FABSCRAP
Join this textile sustainability nonprofit at their Bok warehouse to help sort through materials for reuse and recycling. They’re going for 12 hours straight, and you can sign up for two-hour sessions throughout the day. FABSCRAP will provide meals, entertainment, and special presentations, and volunteers can take home two pounds of fabric for every hour they volunteer.
April 22nd, 9 a.m.-9 p.m., FABSCRAP at Bok, 1901 South 9th Street.

FABSCRAP’s location inside Bok. / Photograph by Chris Siracusa.

Friends of Wissahickon Earth Day of Service
Friends of Wissahickon have identified four areas of Wissahickon Valley Park in need of some love for this morning of service. Sign up online to pick your meet-up location, then arrive on Earth Day to help clear litter, cut back invasive plants and more to beautify the park. No experience is necessary; tools, gloves and instruction will be provided. Be sure to wear long pants and bring water. Register online to receive more detailed meet-up instructions.
April 22nd, 9 a.m.-noon, Wissahickon Valley Park.

Love Your Park Week
If Earth Day weekend doesn’t work for you, or if you just want to continue your good work, you’re in luck. Fairmount Park Conservancy’s Love Your Park Week is coming up May 13th through 21st, with opportunities to volunteer at one of dozens of parks across Philadelphia. Registration is already open.
May 13th-21st, parks throughout Philadelphia.