Each year, Americans are asked to set aside one day—the last Saturday in September—to “lend a hand to the lands” that we use to enjoy the outdoors. National Public Lands Day (NPLD) is the nation’s largest single-day volunteer effort for public lands, and this year, it’s taking place on Saturday, September 26th.
You can join thousands of volunteers who will gather at parks, forests, reservoirs, and other public areas to help improve and steward our nation’s natural resources. There will be opportunities to build bridges and trails, plant stream banks, restore lakes and wetlands, remove invasive plants, improve wildlife habitat, repair cultural resources and recreational facilities, and carry out hundreds of other projects. Volunteers will also learn about the importance of public lands to the nation’s environmental, economic, and social health as well as get a firsthand perspective on the problems and issues facing land managers.
If you love the outdoors, here’s your chance to give back to nature! Mark your calendar for September 26th, and find a NPLD site near you by checking the list below or visiting publiclandsday.org. And don’t forget to use our Pocket Ranger® apps during your visit to our beloved parks, forests, and lakes!
Red Rock State Park – Sedona, AZ
Maintenance and cleanup of park facilities, trails, and Oak Creek riparian areas. Park interpreters will be available for questions regarding the Oak Creek and its importance to Arizona.
Call 928-282-6907 or click here for more information.
Lake Dardanelle State Park – Russellville, AR
Join Lake Dardanelle State Park to celebrate this national cleanup event in conjunction with the Great Arkansas Cleanup to help pick up trash along the lake and throughout the community. Volunteers clean trails, shorelines, and public parks around Russellville. Following the cleanup will be a ceremony for all those who volunteered and a free lunch along with activities for the whole family.
Call 479-890-7479 or click here for more information.
The Barnacle Historic State Park – Coconut Grove, FL
Partake in a morning of park cleanup, landscape beautification, and exotic plant removal. At the conclusion of the event, Park Rangers will provide free lunch and a tour of the historic house for registered volunteers. Participants under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
Call 305-442-6866 or click here for more information.
George L. Smith State Park – Twin City, GA
Saturday, September 26th is Your State Parks Day. Come out and help with park cleanup and beautification projects. Free T-shirts, water bottles and other goodies will be given to all volunteers.
Call 478-763-2759 or click here for more information.
Sterling State Park – Monroe, MI
Help collect native prairie seed from grasses and wildflowers to restore Lakeplain Prairie.
Call 517-719-2285 or click here for more information.
Tombigbee State Park – Tupelo, MS
Beginning in 2015, Toyota Mississippi will kick-off a five-year NPLD project at Tombigbee State Park. Kids Camp will be offered to children under age 12 with projects that include an interactive water conservation activity provided by Mississippi 4-H as well as painting and building bird houses and feeders. NPLD will conclude with a volunteer celebration including a BBQ lunch, fishing, disc golf, live music, and door prizes (must be present to win). Over the five years, the park will be completely renovated including cabin restoration, bridge construction, installation along nature trails, removal of invasive vegetation, planting flowers and shrubs, welcome center renovations, and overall park beautification.
Call 662-317-3038 or click here for more information.
Onondaga Cave State Park – Leasburg, MO
Attend the Green Living Fall Festival and National Public Lands Day Bio-Blitz! The day’s activities will center around villages and will contain a variety of topics, including educational activities, hands-on activities, vendors, displays and demonstrations, green products, local farming, and sustainable living. The bio-blitz, in honor of National Public Lands Day, will feature experts in a variety of scientific and ecological fields leading groups to identify and record species of flora and fauna throughout the park. The public is invited to voluntarily participate in any group. The Onondaga Friends Association will be demonstrating the making of apple butter and freshly canned jars will be available for sale along with many, many other vendor items.
Call 573-245-6576 or click here for more information.
Elk Knob State Park – Todd, NC
Head over to Elk Knob State Park for National Public Lands Day where you can help work on maintaining the Summit Trail or the new Maple Run Trail. Tools will be provided. Bring water, lunch, and work gloves and wear close-toed shoes.
Call 828-297-7261 or click here for more information.
Black Moshannon State Park – Philipsburg, PA
Help beautify Black Moshannon State Park! Projects include trail maintenance, native plant gardening, litter pickup, and planting. Pre-registration is required. Lunch will be provided and free camping is available that weekend for volunteers.
Call 814-342-5960 or click here for more information.
Bledsoe Creek State Park – Gallatin, TN
Help put together playground equipment at Bledsoe Creek State Park!
Call 615-347-3639 or click here for more information.