By Laura Catherine HermozaEarth Day was established in 1970 by United States Senator Gaylord Nelson as a way to raise awareness for emerging environmental concerns and look for solutions on curbing harmful practices by replacing them with more eco-friendly solutions. As a way to show love for the natural world, Earth Day celebrations have spurred numerous environmental activities through the years. April 22 was officially declared Earth Day in 2009, but a whole host of earth-friendly events encompass the entire month. If you’re looking for positive, peaceful ways to celebrate Earth Day locally, here are six great suggestions.

Constitution Avenue NW, between 15th and 17th Streets NW
Date: Saturday, April 22, 2017 from 9 a.m. on

Scientists and activists will rally to “defend the vital role science plays in our health, safety, economies, and governments.” The March for Science begins with a rally on the north side of the Washington Monument, South of Constitution Avenue NW, between 15th and 17th Streets NW. Teach-ins at several large tents begin at 9. The main stage program of speakers and presenters (including celebrity scientist Bill Nye) runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., when the march itself is set to begin.
Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens
1550 Anacostia Ave. N.E.
Washington, DC 20019
(202) 692-6080

Date: Saturday, April 22, 2017 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.As an annual Earth Day tradition, Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens is presenting a special volunteer event on April 22 between 9 a.m. and noon. Volunteers will sign up to help in spring cleanup and maintenance efforts around the Watershed, assisting in such tasks as invasive plant removal, greenhouse potting and planting, picking up trash and lending assistance wherever else it’s needed. All the hard work and dedication will be rewarded with a following celebration of free food, live music, speakers and local exhibitors. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. the day of.  Volunteers should plan accordingly, dressing in long pants, close-toed shoes and long-sleeved shirts and bring along a bottle of water.

Earthwalk Ways Forest Therapy Institute & Retreat
913 Holly Corner Road
Fredericksburg, VA 22406
(540) 752-5540

Date: Saturday, April 22, 2017 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.You can enjoy two Earth Day-related activities taking place right here throughout the weekend. Register for a special Earth Day “Bathing” Luncheon Retreat from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on April 22 and discover the soothing effects of the surrounding atmosphere. You are not actually bathing in water, but rather taking in a peaceful atmospheric bathing in nature’s nourishment, rediscovering reflection and relaxation practices with proven calming and healing benefits. Then on April 23, from noon to 6 p.m., you can participate in a heated stones prayer/Mother Earth ceremony with Earth Day Earthwalk Ways Sweat Lodge. A sacred fire will be built upon which stones will be heated and then brought into the lodge where water will be poured onto them, creating steam in a sacred ceremonial practice to achieve healing, balance and wellness.

The National Zoo
Earth Day At The National Zoo
3001 Connecticut Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC, 20008
(202) 633-3045
Date: Saturday, April 22, 2017 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

A visit to the National Zoo is another splendid way to celebrate Earth Day. Every year presents a host of green-themed activities right onsite. Exploring the natural world through resident animals is always fun, along with horticultural demonstrations, touring the Zoo’s green facilities and learning more about the eco-friendly practices in place here. Events will take place between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Related:  Best Ways to Celebrate Earth Day in Washington, D.C.

Anacostia Watershed Society
Earth Day Cleanup and Celebration
4302 Baltimore Ave.
Bladensburg, MD 20710
(301) 699-6204

Date: Saturday, April 22, 2017 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.The Anacostia Watershed Society is also hosting a volunteer cleanup day and celebration on April 22. From 9 a.m. to noon more than 2,000 volunteers will set to work around the greater Anacostia Watershed area cleaning up surrounding rivers, streams, parks and neighborhoods. Volunteer appreciation will be honored with an Earth Day Celebration to follow from noon to 2 p.m. at Bladensburg Waterfront Park. The celebration will include live music, entertainment, environmental exhibits and a complimentary lunch provided by Giant.

Earth Day In Alexandria
Braddock Park
1005 Mt. Vernon Ave.
Alexandria, VA 22301
(703) 746-4357

Date: Saturday, April 29, 2017 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.Earth Day festivities continue the following week in Alexandria, VA with its annual community-wide Earth Day Celebration. Taking place at the Lenny Harris Memorial Fields at Braddock Park, this year’s event will bring in nearly 50 local businesses, city departments and non-profit exhibitors. Enjoy games and activities, displays and even live animals following the theme Clean Water Starts with YOU! This year’s event will be on April 29 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Related: Best Ways To Celebrate Earth Day 2013 In Washington DC


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