Events set for Earth Day around DeKalb County include community cleanups, NatureFest and more

Photos: Spring has sprung in DeKalb County ahead of Earth Day

A male downy woodpecker works on an ash tree Friday, April 21, 2023, in County Farm Woods in DeKalb.

Spring has settled around DeKalb County, as birds and other wildlife were out among the budding plants Friday.

Earth Day, an annual commemoration dating back to 1970, is Saturday. The day will be marked by multiple free family-friendly events throughout DeKalb County. Organizers have planned the events to advocate for environmental protection and advocacy efforts meant to raise awareness for how residents can be good stewards of land and environmental causes.

Earth Day events

NatureFest will kick off from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Russell Woods Forest Preserve, 11750 Illinois Route 72, Genoa, co-hosted by the University of Illinois Extension, DeKalb County Forest Preserve and the DeKalb County Soil and Water Conservation District.

In DeKalb, a Community Solar event will kick off from 2 to 4:30 p.m. Saturday at the DeKalb Public Library, 309 Oak St., to share information about how solar energy can be used to transform power use. The free event also will share information about Illinois’ Solar-For-All Program, which offers people based on income eligibility a special rate of half off electricity supply costs.

The Community Solar event is co-hosted by Northern Illinois University environmental class students, the League of Women Voters DeKalb County and 350Kishwaukee.

Other events around the county include planned community cleanups. DeKalb-area group Trash Squirrels will host its annual Earth Day community cleanup from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The event will kick off at New Hope Missionary Baptist Church, 1201 Twombly Road in DeKalb, with a focus on cleaning up a northern stretch of North Annie Glidden Road. Wagon, pullers, gloves, water and a $10 giftcard to There’s Fun in Store will be provided to every volunteer, organizers said.

The Sycamore Lions Club will host a cleanup for the Great Western Trail as part of its annual trail cleanup. The Great Western Trail cleanup will be held April 22, according to a news release. Participants can pick up trash and help clean up the trail. For information, email

A Maple Park Community Cleanup runs through Sunday, and invites area residents to bring garbage bags, gloves and their friends and family to help clean up the community.

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