How to celebrate Earth Day from home

April 22, 2020   By Jenna Careri

How to celebrate Earth Day from home

Earth Day celebrates its 50th anniversary this Wednesday, April 22. But in this strange year, Earth Day looks a little different from usual. Instead of participating in trash clean ups and festivals, people across the country and the world will be spending the day at home.

That doesn’t mean you can’t still celebrate the earth, though! Many organizations are taking their festivities online and there are still a number of things you can do at home to recognize the occasion. Here are a few ways you can safely celebrate Earth Day from home.

Organize a neighborhood safari

With national parks closed and everyone sticking close to home, the 30-minute walk around the block might be getting a little repetitive. Switch things up with an activity for your kids and your neighbors and arrange a neighborhood safari.

National Geographic is calling for kids around the nation to draw their favorite animals and create a jungle in their own neighborhoods. Break out the sidewalk chalk or grab some coloring pages and hang them in the windows. Have all your neighbors do the same and suddenly your sidewalk jaunt is transformed into a creature scavenger hunt!

Use the hashtag #NatGeoEarthDayAtHome to be featured on National Geographic and see creations from across the country.

Help NASA map coral reefs

If you’re tired of playing the same games all the time, here’s a new one that also helps scientists better understand the planet.

NASA’s NeMO-Net project allows researchers to see how climate change is impacting ocean ecosystems by mapping and classifying coral reefs all over the world. Available as a game on iOS and Mac systems, NeMo-Net allows players to explore 3D images of real coral reefs and classify the organisms they see.

The data from each player goes directly to NASA’s supercomputer to help it categorize reef ecosystems across the globe and understand how they are changing over time.

Have an Earth Day T.V. marathon

Running out of movies and shows to binge? Not anymore. The American Museum of Natural History is taking Earth Day virtual by streaming its all-day festival. Learn how to create “Glacier Goo,” see Venus and Mars up close, and play Earth trivia. Events run from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. EDT and watch links can be found here.

Or, if nature docuseries are more your speed, build a pillow fort, break out the popcorn, and give yourself permission to become one with the couch for the day. On the list of must-sees: 2019’s “Our Planet” on Netflix and the critically acclaimed “Blue Planet.”

Take a virtual tour

Feeling stir-crazy? Just because you can’t travel doesn’t mean you can’t see the world, and what better day to be awed by Mother Nature than Earth Day!

Enjoy nature’s splendors from your couch (or your bed – we don’t judge) with this tour of Machu Picchu. Or, stick a little closer to home at the Georgia Aquarium’s live webcams. From swimming puffins to playing sea otters, watching these cute creatures will certainly brighten your day.

If you’re still itching for the great outdoors, check out these tours to go on a dog sled ride in Finland, explore the world’s largest cave, see the national park that inspired the Avatar movies, and much more.

Courtesy of

Unplug – literally and mentally

Earth Day is all about being grateful for the planet we live on, especially now that our worlds have gotten a lot smaller. There’s no better way to do that than getting outside, in whatever way you safely can.

So, on Wednesday, remember to unplug. Power down your laptop, turn off the lights, and go for a walk. While you’re out, pick up any trash you see to make a big difference in your community.

This year Earth Day coincides with the peak of the Lyrid meteor shower, the strongest annual meteor shower in our sky. Catch between five and twenty meteors per hour and be reminded that the struggles of today will pass. Soon, we will once again be enjoying nature in all her splendor. Let’s take care of her.


Jenna is a writer covering the environment and energy industry. She is a Massachusetts native and graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and French.