Become One With Nature For Earth Day

Hands holding a pile of dirt and a small tree forming inside of it.

Earth Day this year is Saturday, April 22 and after a cold winter, we are all ready to get out and embrace Mother Nature. Below are some tips of how you can celebrate Earth Day in the Heritage Corridor.

Starved Rock State Park

Information about all events at Starved Rock State Park can be found at All events at Starved Rock State Park are pre-registration only and are FREE! In addition to the listed organized events, teacher, homeschool, and family activities to download and enjoy at the park can be found at the website listed above as well.

Every Saturday and Sunday April-November at 10am: Take a Hike and Lunch

Discover Starved Rock’s canyons, bluffs and seasonal waterfalls on this guided hike. Listen as the guide tells stories of how Starved Rock got its name along with other legends of the area. Hikes depart from the hotel lobby. Meet there at 9:45am for a 10:00am departure with your guide and to pick up your lunch. Then, you’ll head out to see Wildcat Canyon (with its two observation decks). You’ll also visit Lover’s Leap and Eagle Cliff. Lunch is included with your choice of turkey, ham or veggie wrap, bag of chips, granola bar, piece of fruit and bottled water. The hike will return at approximately 1:30pm.

Every Monday, Wednesday, Saturday April & May at 3pm: Historic Trolley Tours

This will include a 90 minute trolley tour with stops at the Starved Rock State Park Visitors Center, the IL Waterway Visitor Center and through downtown Utica. No Tour on Monday, April 3rd. 

Monday's & Wednesday's at 11am and Saturday's at 9am & 11am April & May: Waterfall & Canyon Trolley Tours

This tour includes hot lunch chosen from a special menu in our restaurant. Lunch will before or after the tour depending on the departure time. Guest will enjoy a short trolley ride to three trail entrances. From there, experience outdoor adventure with three 45- minute guided hikes to French, St. Louis and Ottawa Canyons.

This tour includes three 45-minute hikes that can be strenuous. This tour is not recommend for individuals with limited mobility.

Forest Preserve District of Will County

The Forest Preserve District of Will County is celebrating Earth Day all April long. Some of the events with the Forest Preserve do require registration, so make sure you are signed up ahead of time.

Starved Rock Stewardship Earth Day | Clean Up Day - April 22 at 9am - 11am: Satrved Rock Park Visitor Center

What better way to celebrate Earth Day than volunteering in your community and local state parks. Bring your friends and family out to Starved Rock State Park to help give back on Earth Day this year. Pickers and garbage bags will be provided as well as guidance on where to go and what to pick (plastic bottles, cans, paper trash, etc) from the trails. For more information please contact Lisa Sons at [email protected]

Earth Day Cleanup - April 22 at 10am Rock Run Rookery Preserve 

Celebrate Earth Day by making a difference and cleaning up the shoreline of the Des Plaines River. It will be a morning of invigorating work and Earth Day enthusiasm, and you are sure to leave with a sense of great accomplishment! Registration is required by Friday, April 21. 

Earth Day Festival - April 22 at noon: Hidden Oaks Nature Center 

Celebrate Earth Day at Hidden Oaks! Enjoy live music and demonstrations from local artisans while discovering fun ways to shrink your carbon footprint by going green. Meet the bees that make our honey, visit with our live animals, shop our vendors, explore the hands-on exhibits and be sure to make s’mores at the campfire. Visitors can also create a nature craft to take home and pick up one of our giveaways that promote sustainability. No registration is required.

Earth Day at Thorn Creek: Woodland Wildfire - April 23 at 1pm: Thorn Creek Woods Nature Preserve

Register for the family-friendly event to celebrate the Spring wildflowers that thrive in the shady Thorn Creek Woods. There will be wildflower photo displays, exhibits, games, refreshments, and an Earth Day Raffle. Join the hike at 2pm to discover which species are in bloom, learn their name, and examine their physical appearances. Registration is required by Monday, April 17. 

Earth Day Cleanup and Campfire - April 22 at 4pm: Monee Reservoir

Celebrate Earth Day and make the great outdoors even greater by collecting trash found along Monee Reservoir. Afterward, we will celebrate our accomplishments with a zero-waste/package-free snack around the campfire. Staff will share information about Monee Reservoir’s plastic-free initiative, bike upcycling partnership and fishing line recycling program. Register by April 21. 

The Forge: Lemont Quarries

Help make the earth a better place by starting in Lemont by volunteering to clean up, being apart of restoration work projects, workshops and more. 

Earth Day Festival 2023 - April 22 at 10am 

Join like-minded individuals, families, and organizations in a call to action for our environment. Celebrate Earth Day and enjoy impactful experiences that inspire action. The event features a wide variety of programs including: Active prairie restoration work projects, Workshops & demonstrations,  Video & music presentations, Live presentations focused on improving the climate & conservation.