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10 Earth Day events for the whole family, April 19-22

Posted by Jen Clark Estes  April 11, 2013 07:58 AM

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Celebrate Earth Day at any number of events in and around Boston, including the Franklin Park Zoo.

Photo courtesy of Franklin Park Zoo

Ever since the first celebration of Earth Day (April 22) in 1970, this once-humble holiday has grown into a global phenomenon. Billions of people participate in Earth Day activities each year, all with the common goal of working together to create a healthy planet. Locally, here are ways you and your family can join in the effort this year to celebrate and protect our environment:

"Annual Earth Day Celebration at the EcoTarium," 222 Harrington Way, Worcester. Fri., April 19, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Adults, $7; ages 2-18, $4; seniors and students with ID, $5. Indoor and outdoor family-friendly activities, and exploration of the EcoTarium's beautiful trails, ponds, and woods that are bursting with new life.

"Celebrate Earth Day with Postage Stamps," Spellman Museum of Stamps & Postal History, at Regis College, 235 Wellesley St., Weston. Fri., April 19, noon - 4 p.m. All ages. Adults, $8; seniors, $5; ages 5-16, $3. Bring items such as cans, bottles, paper cups and more to be recycled by decorating them with free postage stamps. Children can learn how to make envelopes from old paper and can use them to send Earth Day greetings to friends with the Museum providing the postage.

"Annual Earth Day Charles River Cleanup," 190 Park Rd., Weston. Sat., April 20, 9 a.m. - noon. All ages. Free. Come join more than 3,000 other volunteers along all 80 miles of the Charles River in the 11th Annual Earth Day Cleanup. You will be part of a group picking up trash (including shopping carts, plastic bottles, and old tires) from along the banks of the Charles River at one of more than 50 sites from Boston to Milford.

"Celebrate Earth Day," Stone Zoo, 149 Pond St., Stoneham. Sat., April 20, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. All ages. Adults, $14; ages 62+, $12; ages 2-12, $10; under 2 and members free. Opportunities to meet with zookeepers at scheduled zookeeper encounters, to watch many of the animals receive enrichment, and more. The New England Dance Ensemble will perform a musical adaptation of "The Lorax" at 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Zoo New England’s 2013 radio partner, MAGIC 106.7, will be onsite from 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. with music, games and prizes.

"Earth Day Music Festival," Endicott College, 376 Hale St., Beverly. Sat., April 20, 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. Free. All ages. Music performances all day, organic food, plant sale, tye-dye and more, including the 2nd annual Energy Summit, at which experts in energy and conservation discuss the most significant energy challenges facing our nation.

"Discovery Day: eARTh day!", Discovery Museums, 177 Main St., Acton. Sun., April 21, 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Toddlers and up. $11. Various activities and crafts that focus on nature, conservation and recycling, including a collaborative Earth Day sculpture. Programs run throughout the day; check website for times.

"Party for the Planet," Franklin Park Zoo, One Franklin Park Dr., Boston. Sun., April 21, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Adults $17; ages 2-12, $14; seniors, $11; under 2, free. Franklin Park Zoo has teamed up with Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts and the Cambridge Science Festival. The festivities will include opportunities to meet the zookeepers, plus animal enrichment activities, scavenger hunts, entertainment, eco-friendly exhibitors and much more.

"Blue Discoveries Family Day: Earth Day celebration," New England Aquarium, 1 Central Wharf, Boston. Sun., April 21, 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. Free with Museum admission: Adults, $19.95; ages 3-11, $14.95; ages 60+, $17.95; under 3 and members free. Learn more about the blue planet through art, science and storytelling. Programs highlight Aquarium favorites as well as hidden treasures.

"Earth Day Animal Tales and Parade Hats," Barefoot Books, 89 Thoreau St., Concord. Sun., April 21, 3-4 p.m. Ages 2-6. $4 for craft. Hear stories of some of the cleverest animals around, then make your own animal hat.

"Earth Day Celebration," Children's Museum of New Hampshire, 6 Washington St., Dover, NH. Mon., April 22, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Adults & children over 1 year, $9; ages 65+, $8. From planting seeds to recycling, from finding great resources for farm-fresh food in our local communities to exploring renewable energy resources, Earth Day at CMNH will offer something for everyone in your family. Scavenger hunts, crafts, projects and more.

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Welcome to Parent Buzz, where you can read about and discuss the hot parenting issues of the day, find family-friendly events in Boston and beyond, and get parenting tidbits and tips.

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Kristi Palma, Moms producer, is the mom of a first grader and a preschooler. She is a writer who enjoys cooking her grandmother's Italian recipes (when her son isn't launching paper airplanes into them). Follow her on Twitter @kristipalma.
Jennifer Clark Estes is a teacher, writer, blogger, and the mother of four young children. In her free time, she blogs at A Mom's World, plays with the kids (or chauffeurs them around), and is desperately seeking a quiet spot so she can read a book. Follow her on Twitter @JenniferCEstes.

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