“Healthy Parks for a Healthy Chicago”

Friends of the Parks’ 30th Annual Chicagoland Celebration

Earth Week

This year’s commemoration promises to be extra special as Friends of the Parks celebrates our 30th Anniversary of leading park clean-ups across Chicago in celebration of Earth Day.

So in honor of this milestone, Friends of the Parks has planned an entire week of activities, including but not limited to our usual Earth Day Parks & Preserves Clean Up! Our full week of events kicks off on global Earth Day—Monday, April 22—and run through Sunday, April 28.

We have organized activities that align with our Earth Day theme for this year and Friends of the Park’s new tag line: “Healthy Parks for a Healthy Chicago” which is derived from our new mission and vision statements.   We hope that you will join in on any or all of these activities and be inspired to think about and live into the many ways that parks can and should contribute to the health of our communities and our city.

In every case, please direct questions and/or your RSVP to Sandra at deltoros@fotp.org or 312.857.2757 x1.

Here’s the Earth Week line-up with something for everyone!

 

Monday, April 22, 6:00pm-8:30pm, FOTP office, 17 N. State, Suite 1450

State of the Parks Mini-Summit/Open House

Celebrate global Earth Day with us by thinking about equity! We will reprise the “equity walk” exercise that we did at our State of the Parks Summit earlier this year and will review together the Platform for Parks that we will soon present to our incoming mayor. We also hope to help inspire and equip Park Advisory Councils and other park partners to prepare to gather, discuss, and write “Memos to the Mayor” as part of the Chicago Community Trust’s May 14 annual “On the Table” event. Oh, and we’ll announce our 2019 Seed Grant winners, too!

 

Tuesday, April 23, 7:00pm, Calumet Park and Berger Park

Film Screening for the Last Four Miles

We will screen excerpts of the “Ten Parks that Changed America” documentary as a prompt for facilitated discussions. Think with us about how parks—and lakefront parks in particular—contribute to the health of Chicago and how we might work together to finish the lakefront park and path system, per our Last Four Miles Initiative.

 

Wednesday, April 24, evening, Clarendon Park (closed), the South Park System(closed), Englewood (by invitation only)

Parks as Common Ground for the Common Good

As an outgrowth of our “Parks as Democracy?” Initiative, we are laying the groundwork for a “Common Ground for the Common Good” series, centering parks as spaces to bring together Chicagoans who may have different points of view but who are interested in finding ways to work together for the health of our parks, our communities, and our city. FOTP staff have been training to conduct “Constructive Conversations” and “Racial Healing Circles,” and this evening’s activities will serve as practice sessions with gatherings of friends of the parks who may want to be part of this effort to promote healing and productive work together for the benefit of our fractured democracy and city.

 

Thursday, April 25, 6:30pm-8:30pm, McKinley Park Field House

A Community Conversation on Environmental Justice and Parks in Chicago

Presented by FOTP and Neighbors for Environmental Justice, who have brought to us concerns about the asphalt plant located directly across from McKinley Park, we will discuss how and why having a clean, accessible, low-pollution open space is so important. Together we will lay the groundwork for more advocacy to protect this and other green and blue spaces from encroachment from pollution sources.

 

Friday, April 26, 5:30pm Marquette Park (next to running track and lagoon)

Free Family-friendly Fitness Fun!

This park activation event will feature an evening of physical fitness activities for various fitness levels. FOTP board member and fitness entrepreneur, Sho Pettaway, will offer a free 30 minute yoga session in the park. International outdoor calisthenics competitor and advocate for the expansion of healthy, outdoor fitness spaces, Omari Jinaki, will teach kids to do pull-ups, push-ups, and dips while maintaining proper form. And FOTP Executive Director Juanita Irizarry will offer a bonus “Walk with Juanita” around Marquette Park.

 

Saturday, April 27, times vary, parks and preserves across Chicago

30th Annual Earth Day Park and Preserves Clean-up and Celebration

Join fellow park lovers at over 100 parks and preserves across Chicagoland for the 30th Annual Chicagoland Earth Day Clean-Up! Find a park or forest preserve near you and be one of the thousands who are working with their neighbors to spruce-up their park and build camaraderie with other volunteers during this annual event. The biggest post-clean-up celebration will take place at our hub site at Humboldt Park. Come on over! (Scroll down below to register for an Earth Day clean-up!)

 

Sunday, April 28, 10:30am-11:15am, 1pm-2:30pm, and 1:00pm-4:00pm, respectively

Parks in Context Tours

The development of parks can be linked to economic development or be seen as in competition with it. Enjoy one or more of these parks tours and think about their relationship to their distinct contexts, such as Chinatown and the future “The 78” mega-development; DuSable Park as the culmination of the Chicago River Walk tourist destination; and the redevelopment of the southeast side per the Calumet Collaborative’s vision of economic, community, and environment;

  • Ping Tom Park walking tour led by landscape architect Ernie Wong.
  • DuSable Heritage Corridor and future DuSable Park site tour led by DuSable

Heritage Association. (This tour includes going up and down stairs along the River Walk.)

  • Lake Katherine bus and hiking tour led by Lake Calumet Vision Committee.

 

Can’t wait to see you at one or all of these Earth Week events promoting Healthy Parks for a Healthy Chicago! Space is more limited at some of these events than others. Please communicate with Sandra at deltoros@fotp.org or 312.857.2757 x1 for more information or to RSVP ASAP.


“Healthy Parks for a Healthy Chicago”

Friends of the Parks’ 30th Annual Chicagoland

Earth Day Parks & Preserves Clean-Up

Saturday, April 27, 2019

For 30 years, Friends of the Parks has been mobilizing community members to participate in Earth Day volunteerism. People from neighborhoods all throughout Chicago and the surrounding suburbs volunteer at their local parks and forest preserves to practice stewardship and celebrate community. Friends of the Parks’ 30th Annual Earth Day Parks & Preserves Clean-Up is done in partnership with the Chicago Park District, the Forest Preserves of Cook County and many community groups across Chicagoland. Join us in this year’s Earth Day Parks & Preserves Clean-Up!

What has been an annual Earth Day park clean-up and celebration for Friends of the Parks and community partners for three decades, will now be commemorated this year with a host of other activities during EARTH WEEK! Please visit this page again soon for updated information on Earth Week, which will kick-off on Monday, April 22nd.


Get Involved this Earth Day!

Do you know you want to help out in some way this Earth Day, but don’t know how? Take a look below at just some of the ways you can get involved this Earth Day.

 

Volunteer as a Site Captain!

Site Captains are special volunteers who take on the leadership role of organizing and implementing Earth Day events at their local park. They are passionate and dedicated members of their communities, who are always willing to lend a helping hand. If this sounds like you, register today as a Site Captain!

Site Captain registration closed on Friday, March 29, 2019

  • What are the responsibilities of a Site Captain?  Site Captains commit to responsibilities before, during and after the Earth Day event. Look at the “2019 Earth Day Site Captain Packet” to learn more.

 

Does your site already have a Site Captain?

Become an Earth Day Volunteer!

Find your local park or forest preserve and register as an Earth Day volunteer below!

 

Forest Preserves Of Cook County

Bemis Woods North: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Chicago Portage: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Deer Grove East: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Kickapoo Woods: Volunteer on Earth Day!
McCormick Woods: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Orland Grassland: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Brookfield Prairie & Woods (April 28th): Volunteer on Earth Day!
LaBagh Woods/Hernandez (April 28th): Volunteer on Earth Day!
Schiller Woods (April 28th): Volunteer on Earth Day!
Want to schedule your own clean-up time in the Forest Preserves during “Earth Week” or anytime of the year? Choose your date, time, and place anywhere in the Forest Preserves of Cook County! Bring your family and friends. Please contact Forest Preserves staff by visiting HERE.

 

Chicago Parks

63rd Street Beach: Volunteer on Earth Day!
A. Montgomery Ward Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Adams (George and Adele) Playground Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Anderson (Fred) Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Anderson (Louis) Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Arcade Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Arthur Ashe Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Austin Town Hall Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Berger Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Bessemer Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Blackhawk Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Buffalo Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Burnside Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Buttercup Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Calumet Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Cedar Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Clarendon Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Churchill Dog Friendly Area: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Clark (Richard) Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Clybourn Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Commercial Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Cotton Tail Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Davis Square Park (April 20th): Volunteer on Earth Day!
Dunning Read Conservation Area: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Eckhart Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Ellis Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Elm Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Euclid Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Evergreen Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Fellger Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Foster Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Franklin Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Golden Gate Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Gompers Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Grand Crossing Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Gross Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Hadiya Pendleton Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Hayes Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Honore Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Horner Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Humboldt Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Indian Ridge Marsh Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Jacob Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Jane Addams Memorial Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Jefferson Memorial Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Kathy Osterman Beach: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Kells Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Kelly (John H.) Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Kelly (Edward) Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Kelvyn Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Ken-Well Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Kilbourn Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Kosciuszko Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Lake Meadows Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Lake Shore Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
La Villita Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Langley Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Levin Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Lincoln Park (April 20th): Volunteer on Earth Day!
Lucy Flower Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Mamie Till-Mobley Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Mary Bartelme Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Mary Richardson Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Mayfair Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
McGuane Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
McKinley Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Midway Plaisance Park: Volunteer on Earth Day! 
Montrose Beach:  Volunteer on Earth Day!
Montrose Beach Dunes: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Montrose Dog Beach: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Mozart Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Oak Street Beach: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Ogden Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Park #514: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Park #535: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Park #540: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Ping Tom Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Prairie Pointe Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Privet Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Pullman Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Railroad Junction Playlot Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Rainbow Beach Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Ravenswood Manor Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Revere Park (April 28th): Volunteer on Earth Day!
Riis Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
River Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Rowan Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Rutherford Sayre Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Scottsdale Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Seneca Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Seward Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Simons Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Skinner Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Smith (Joseph Higgins) Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Snowberry Playlot Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
South Chicago People’s Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Steelworkers Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Sunken Gardens Park: Volunteer on Earth Day! 
Superior Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Tilton Park (April 20th): Volunteer on Earth Day!
Touhy Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Unity Playlot Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Vittum Park (April 20th): Volunteer on Earth Day!
Walsh Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Washington Square Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
West Chatham Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
West Lawn Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!
West Ridge Nature Preserve: Volunteer on Earth Day!
Wicker Park (April 6th): Volunteer on Earth Day!
Wildwood Park: Volunteer on Earth Day!

 


Can’t Volunteer? Get involved in another way!

Become an Earth Day 2019 sponsor!

Friends of the Parks has been cleaning and greening Chicago’s parks and preserves since 1975.  Now your company can benefit from sponsoring Friends of the Parks’ Earth Day Parks & Preserves Clean Up!

This is the Midwest’s largest Earth Day parks clean up, with 5,000 volunteers who “act locally” on Earth Day by cleaning and sprucing up their neighborhood parks, playgrounds and forest preserves.  Our volunteers make a big impact on the quality of life in their own neighborhoods and highlight the importance of Earth Day to our global environment.

You can show your company’s commitment to our local environment in 2019 by sponsoring Earth Day! This event highlights the importance of Earth Day as a way to build “Healthy Parks for a Healthy Chicago.” Companies can also join in with teams to volunteer the day of the event.

For more information on how to become an Earth Day Sponsor contact Sandra Del Toro at (312) 857-2757 ext. 1 or DelToroS@fotp.org.

 


Celebrating our 30th Earth Day!

In honor of Friends of the Parks’ 30th Earth Day Celebration, enjoy these pictures from our previous Earth Days.

 

Earth Day 2007
Rainbow Beach Earth Day (unknown year)
Earth Day 2008 at Humboldt Park
Earth Day 2004
Earth Day Park Clean-up (unknown year)
Earth Day Crafts 2004

~~ Looking back at 2018 ~~

Your Earth, Your Legacy

29th Annual Chicago Earth Day Parks  & Preserves  Clean-Up

Saturday April 21, 2018

2018 Earth Day T-Shirt Design by Montana Baker age 14

Thank you for making Earth Day 2018 a Success! 

 

Friends of the Parks would like to extend a special thank you to all of the site captains,  volunteers and sponsors that made this year possible. Especially Target, Magid, Wells Lamont, Hyatt, Ozinga, Bickerdike, Living Green, Openlands, Forest Preserves of Cook County, Chicago Park District, and Friends of the Forest Preserves.  None of this would have happened without your hard work and dedication!  

2018 was the biggest year yet! Over 5,000 volunteers turned out city wide to clean up over 135 Parks and Forest preserves.

Please take a look at some pictures from the day of below!   Keep checking back for updates about next year’s event! 

We’re thrilled to partner this year with the Chicago Park District, the Forest Preserves of Cook County, Friends of the Forest Preserves, Openlands and many local community partners to organize another successful Earth Day event for Chicago’s parks and preserves!

The Forest Preserves of Cook County has “Stewardship Volunteer days” scheduled every week of the year in Chicagoland, including “Earth Day!” Please see the online calendar to register for these volunteer days at this website:  http://fpdcc.com/volunteer/