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Apr 18, 2014

On April 26, the Forest Preserves of Cook County Will Host Free Public Events, Programs and Volunteer Opportunities


On Saturday, April 26 (and the week leading up to it), the Forest Preserves of Cook County will hold special events and volunteer workdays to celebrate Earth Day 2014.


“The Forest Preserves of Cook County manages nearly 69,000 acres of beautiful preserves, perfect for hiking, biking, bird-watching, fishing, and many other healthy, family-friendly activities,” said Forest Preserves President Toni Preckwinkle. “Earth Day is an invitation to reaffirm our commitment to the natural environment and continue preserving habitat for the millions of plants, animals and other living things that call the forest preserves home.”


“The forest preserves are right there for us to enjoy,” said Arnold Randall, General Superintendent of the Forest Preserves of Cook County. “We want more people to know about all the recreational and educational opportunities the Forest Preserves offers, almost all of which are free. Sometimes it just takes a guided hike or a morning with a group of friendly volunteers to find that first connection with nature.”





Saturday, April 26, 9 am – 2 pm

25th Annual Earth Day Parks & Preserves Clean-Up at Whistler Woods

Whistler Woods

Riverdale (480 Acme Drive)

Join Forest Preserves General Superintendent Arnold Randall to restore Whistler Woods and other nearby preserves. Help clean up the preserves in the morning, and then celebrate with fun activities, hikes, bike repairs, art projects and more. Drop off your unwanted textiles and electronics. In partnership with Friends of the Parks, the Cook County Department of Environment and the Youth Outdoor Ambassador program funded by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources’ Coastal Management program. Register at


Saturday, April 26, 9 am – 2 pm

Deer Grove West Earth Day Workday and Celebration

Deer Grove West, Grove #5

Palatine, west side of Quentin Road, between Dundee and Lake Cook Roads

Cook County Chief Sustainability Officer Deborah Stone will speak on highlights of the County’s sustainability work. Work hands-on, removing brush to restore habitat in this beautiful oak woods. Sponsors include Friends of Deer Grove, Forest Preserves of Cook County, Openlands, Sierra Club Northwest Cook County Group and Friends of the Forest Preserves. Learn more at






Saturday, April 19, 10 am – 2 pm

Earth Day

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center

9800 South 104th Avenue

We only have one planet and most of it consists of water. Fun and interactive water activities will show you how important water really is and why we should conserve it.


Sunday, April 20, noon – 4 pm

Almost Earth Day

Crabtree Nature Center

3 Stover Road, Barrington, IL

Learn how to lessen your impact on the earth and create a recycled art project.


Saturday, April 26, 10 am – 3 pm

Earth Day

Sand Ridge Nature Center

15891 Paxton Ave. South Holland

Join us for a day set aside as a reminder to be good stewards of our planet every day. Activities include hikes, puppet shows, a craft and Earth Day Jeopardy!


Saturday, April 26, 1 pm – 2 pm

Woodland Walk for Earth Day

Trailside Museum of Natural History

738 Thatcher Avenue, River Forest

Enjoy a guided walk through the springtime woods. We’ll see wildflowers, nesting birds, and other spring delights from Mother Nature. Family program; please register by 4/24.


Learn more about our nature center offerings at





The Forest Preserve District of Cook County’s extensive volunteer program provides meaningful opportunities throughout the year for individuals and groups to enhance the health and beauty of the preserves.


On April 26, there are many opportunities to volunteer at a forest preserve near you. Volunteer work includes removing invasive plant species, cleaning up litter, and cutting and piling brush. All tools and training are provided. Volunteers should dress for the weather.


Join us! Workdays are scheduled across the county, including at the following locations:


Busse Woods South, Elk Grove Village

McCormick Woods, North Riverside

Wolf Road Prairie, Westchester

Orland Grassland, Orland Park

Bartel Grassland, Matteson

Paddock Woods, Palos Hills


For details and a complete list of volunteer workday opportunities, visit our Volunteer page.




About the Forest Preserves of Cook County

Established in 1914, the Forest Preserves of Cook County is the oldest and one of the largest forest preserve systems in the nation, maintaining more than 68,000 acres of open land for the education, pleasure and recreation of the public. The District strives to protect and restore the county’s diverse ecosystems, so all our unique native plants and animals can live and thrive. Each year, millions of people use these lands and facilities to enjoy or study nature, bicycle, hike, fish, cross-country ski, picnic, golf, canoe, or simply relax in a large preserve that leaves urban life behind. For more information on the Forest Preserves of Cook County, visit

Visit two of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County