A Multi-City Guide to Earth Day Festivals and Events

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Earth Day humbuggery aside, what are you doing on April 22nd? Here’s a list of treehuggin’ ideas and entertaining events across the country to celebrate our planet while having a blast.

PhotobucketGreen Apple Festival

Uniting green advocates from ten cities from coast to coast, the nationally-coordinated Green Apple Festival is the largest Earth Day celebration in the country. While it began as a single event in New York City three years ago, the major metropolises of Boston, Washington DC, Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, Austin, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle will all take part in the action this year and co-host this monumental gala the weekend before Earth Day. Through live entertainment, environmental activities and distinguished guest speakers, this combined effort aims to raise awareness of the green cause and inspire individuals to take an eco-friendly initiative.

PhotobucketParty for the Planet

Pass on eco-friendly practices to your little ones by treating them to a Party for the Planet in celebration of Earth Day. The Association of Zoos and Aquariums sponsors this fun-filled event at over a hundred locations across the country, including Phoenix, Denver, San Francisco, Dallas and Pittsburgh. In addition to learning about wildlife, they’ll enjoy activities that are both fascinating and fulfilling, such as measuring their eco-footprint, building a birdhouse and planting a seed to bring home and nourish. Click here to find one year you.

PhotobucketDisney’s Earth

Following the incredible journeys of a family of polar bears, African elephants and humpback whales, Disney’s Earth opens in theaters on Earth Day. From the creative team responsible for the acclaimed television series Planet Earth, this epic environmental film will touch and dazzle nature lovers of all ages with its remarkable footage and spectacular landscapes. Plus, if you buy a ticket to see this flick on Earth Day a tree will be planted in your name.

PhotobucketEarth Day in Central Park

Think you can’t get anything for free in the Big Apple? Well, get yourself to Earth Day in Central Park. Without spending a cent, you can commemorate this environmental holiday with demonstrations in composting and tree care, mulching and planting projects, recycled material crafts and live entertainment – all thanks to the Central Park Conservancy. Events will be held from noon until 4 pm on Sunday, April 26.

PhotobucketEnvironmental Film Festival

From April 16-19, Yale University is hosting an Environmental Film Festival in honor of Earth Day. Filmmakers of showcased documentaries and experts on featured topics will be on hand to answer questions and further educate attendees about critical green issues. And, it’s not just for students. Screenings and events are on the house and open to the public.

PhotobucketEarth Day on the National Mall

On Sunday, April 19, the nation’s capital will be abuzz with environmental solidarity in observance of Earth Day with famous figures like Edward Markey, member of the House of Representatives, Majora Carter, founder of Sustainable South Bronx and Denis Hayes, the man behind the very first Earth Day. In addition to these eminent guests, the anticipated Eco-Roadshow will feature exhibits from green companies and non-profit organizations.

PhotobucketEarth Stroll

With the purchase of an $8 eco-passport, Bay Area dwellers and visitors can honor Earth Day on Crissy Field. On Saturday, April 18, the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy will host entertainment for the whole family at this popular outdoor spot as a tribute to the environment. Attendees of all ages can learn about native plants, participate in a bicycle rodeo and ride a biodiesel bus, all with live music jamming in the background.

PhotobucketLeap for Green

Kicking off the festivities on Saturday, April 18 with the Early Bird exploration, the Leap for Green Earth Day event outside of Seattle invites locals to get acquainted with the Reptile Man, EarthCorps, Full Circle Farms, renowned artist Marita Dingus and more. Wrap up the green celebration in the heart of nature by taking the Busy Beaver tour of the north wetlands.

PhotobucketMiami Goin’ Green

Featuring unique environmental exhibits like a bike-powered blender and a Nintendo Wii that runs on solar power, the Miami Goin’ Green Earth Day festival is sure to pique your eco interest. Here, you can honor our planet with workshops, seminars, live entertainment and interactive green experiments that will amuse children and adults alike. Ride your bike to Bayfront Park on April 25 and, in addition to complimentary admission, you can have your eco-friendly ride valeted for free.

PhotobucketEarth Day Festival and Flea Market in Clark Park

On Saturday, April 18, the City of Brotherly Love is expressing its devotion to Mother Nature with an entertaining festival in her name to commemorate Earth Day. Join your fellow environmental supporters at Clark Park for complimentary workshops on sustainability, health and gardening, a farmers’ market, green information booths, live music and more.

PhotobucketEarth Fair

With three stages for live entertainment, a long list of eco-friendly exhibitors, an activity area just for children and more, San Diego’s Earth Fair is shaping up to be quite the green gala. On Sunday, April 19 at Balboa Park, locals can learn how to make their living space more sustainable, admire artistic representations of endangered species made from recycled materials and take a peak at the future of more environmentally-conscious automobiles at the cleaner car concourse.

PhotobucketWilshire Center Earth Day

If you live in Los Angeles or the surrounding area, spend Earth Day on Wilshire Boulevard. Here, you can sample organically-grown local produce at a farmers’ market or enjoy live entertainment from performers like Naked Rhythm and Mystic Journey. Bring your old electronics to have them recycled free of charge and take home a free fruit tree, compliments of the Mayor’s Million Trees Initiative.

Live too far from these major festivals? Click here to search for local celebrations in your area.

Image: mysi anne