Eco-Friendly Escapades: Green Attractions and Earth Day Celebrations in Erie, PA
Friday Mar 31st, 2023
Erie County is home to numerous environmentally friendly attractions or "green" wonders. By following certain guidelines, using sustainable materials, and employing earth-conscious practices, these eco-friendly attractions produce fewer greenhouse gas emissions, making them gentle on the environment and a positive force for the Earth. Immerse yourself in the Erie region's natural beauty by exploring these green attractions and joining in our region’s Earth Day-themed events! (main photo courtesy of Asbury Woods Nature Center)
Presque Isle State Park is an eco-friendly attraction that focuses on conserving natural habitats by educating its visitors on environmental issues and providing sustainable recreational activities. The park is home to diverse ecosystems and numerous plant and animal species, which plays a crucial role in maintaining the ecological balance of the area. There are many activities to enjoy while visiting Presque Isle that have a minimal human impact on the environment, such as hiking, birdwatching, and wildlife observation. Educational programs to help raise awareness about the importance of preserving the park’s unique environment and encourage environmental stewardship are offered year-round.
The Erie Art Museum’s 2015 building addition was Erie County’s first attraction to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification, the second-highest level of sustainability achievement according to the U.S. Green Building Council. Discover the museum’s eco-friendly designs including water-efficient fixtures, high competence heating and cooling system, and recycled rapidly renewable, low-emitting, and certified construction materials that celebrate sustainable architecture.
Asbury Woods is a perfect place for families and friends to appreciate and protect natural spaces by playing an active role in conserving pristine areas, engaging in outdoor recreational activities, and participating in environmental education experiences. Go inside the Andrew J. Conner Nature Center to learn about the facility’s state-of-the-art sustainable design, which features a geothermal heating and cooling system, a flourishing “living” roof, and an abundance of natural lighting and solar heating. It’s a fun journey of understanding what it means to coexist harmoniously with nature.
Stroll the scenic pathways at Lake Erie Arboretum at Frontier Park (LEAF) and surround yourself with colorful displays of blooming trees, shrubs, plants, and the gentle sounds of Cascade Creek. LEAF focuses on preserving native plant species, providing habitat for local wildlife, and spreading the knowledge of eco-friendly living through various programs and events. By maintaining the arboretum as a refreshing green space, LEAF contributes to improving the air and water quality in its neighborhood. It is a welcoming atmosphere to enjoy peaceful experiences and memorable outdoor moments. Photo by @erieactivities.
Spend an afternoon at the Erie Zoo with your favorite zoo animals and see what measures the Zoo takes to create a greater sense of awareness, stewardship, and conservation of animals and plants. An intriguing facet of the Zoo lies in its innovative water-saving practices that prioritize the principles of recycling and waste reduction. For example, the water systems in many of the animal exhibits use recirculated water and the Zoo composts its herbivorous animal waste as well as kitchen scraps from animal diets to nourish the botanical gardens found throughout. Other green features include a bag-less gift shop, biodegradable and recycled materials at concession stands, and energy-efficient lighting. Throughout the year, the Zoo hosts educational programs and events centered on conservation and supporting the protection of endangered species.
Earth Day-Related Events
Saturday, April 15: 8 a.m.-12 p.m. – Presque Isle State Park Spring Beach Clean-Up
Help keep Presque Isle healthy and beautiful at the 62nd annual clean-up. Volunteers are asked to meet at Rotary Pavilion between 7:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. to sign in, receive bags, gloves, and clean-up locations. Lunch is included. No registration is required.
Friday, April 21: 4:30-5:30 p.m. – Kids Hiking Club at Asbury Woods
Come explore the trails at Asbury Woods with one of their naturalists. Parents are welcome to join in the fun, but they are not required to be there. Register here.
Saturday, April 22: 11 a.m. – Noon, Earth Day at the expERIEnce Children’s Museum Celebrate Earth Day and reduce, reuse, and recycle with Green Scene Thrift! Enjoy various activities including Earth Day story time, repurposing items from Green Scene Thrift, and a free book table. Included with museum admission, registration is not required.
Sunday, May 14, 10 a.m. to Noon – Tea-rrific Tea Tasting
Spend a relaxing Mother’s Day with a special tea tasting at the Hagen History Center. Join Hagen History Center hosts executive director Cal Pifer and assistant director of facilities Adam Macrino for a true tasting of black, white, and oolong teas along with finger sandwiches and scones. The event also includes learning a bit of history about each unique loose-leaf tea being served and a self-guided tour of the Hagen Campus. The event is $25 for members and $30 for non-members. Reservations can be made here.
Saturday, May 20: 10:00-2:00 p.m. – Erie Zoo Party for the Planet
Join all your animal friends at the Erie Zoo for this collaborative celebration of Earth Day, World Ocean’s Day, and Endangered Species Day. The event is included with regular Zoo admission.