Waukesha County


April 20 - 26, 2024 

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Activities + Programs • Earth Week Celebration • Volunteer Events


Earth Week Activities and Programs

April 1 - 30
Sunrise to 10 pm
Retzer Nature Center

All Month Long

Story Hike

Come out to Retzer to enjoy this Spring’s Story Hike, featuring the children’s book “Crow Not Crow,” by Jane Yolen and Adam Stemple. Set out on the Orange Trail to read the book while enjoying the outdoors at the same time! The Orange Trail is a mowed grass trail with some sloped terrain (0.75 mile approx).

Free • No registration
View more info

A partnership with Retzer Nature Center and Bridges Library System

Wednesday, April 17
7:30 - 8:45 pm
Horwitz-DeRemer Planetarium

Sunset Meditation Planetarium Show & Peaceful Night Hike

Come unwind under the dome of the Horwitz-DeRemer Planetarium and meditate for your mental health during Earth Week! View a planetarium show of an amazing sunset as you travel from the Grand Canyon to the North Pole, then relax under a night sky filled with stars with glimpses of the Northern Lights under the dome. After the show, take a quiet hike outside with a Retzer naturalist and discover the tranquil sights and sounds of Retzer Nature Center.

  • 7:30 - 8:00 pm- Sunset Meditation Planetarium Show
  • 8:00 - 8:45 pm - Peaceful Night Hike (weather and trail conditions permitting)

$10/person • Ages 10+
Required: Register by April 16 at 7:30 pm.
60 participants max. Sorry, no walk-ins.

Wednesday, April 24
10 - 11 am
Retzer Nature Center

Outdoor Classroom:
Recycle Raccoon's Adventure Hike

We’ll go for a hike and learn from the Waukesha County Recycles mascot, Recycle Raccoon! He’ll teach us what everyday actions we can do in and around our homes and yards by exploring the 4 R’s: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Rot. Expect adventure along the way!

$5/student • Ages 4k - 12
Required: Register by Tuesday, April 23 at 10 am

Thursday, April 25
10 - 11 am
Retzer Nature Center
A Mindful Walk in Nature with the Mindfulness Community of Milwaukee

Taking a walk in nature is beneficial for our physical and mental health. We experience the most benefit when we are mentally, as well as physically, present in nature. This walk at Retzer Nature Center will feature various examples of practices that we can do to be more fully present to the wonders of nature. Meet at the Discovery Trail entrance.

Note: Recommended for ages 10+ with ability walk one mile.

Free • Ages 10+
No registration

Friday, April 26
7 - 8:30 am 
Retzer Nature Center

Morning Bird Hike with the Benjamin Goss Bird Club

This 1.5-mile easy hike is a great opportunity to learn about the birds found in Waukesha County and how they fit into our environment, habitat, and county. No expertise is needed and all skill levels are welcome. Bring your own binoculars or borrow ours (limited quantity); cameras are welcome. The hike is held rain or shine, so dress for the weather and meet in the parking lot area nearest to the Learning Center Building. Recommended for ages 8+.

Free • Ages 8+
No registration
Groups of 10 or more: Reserve your space no later than April 20 by contacting Retzer Nature Center at 262-896-8007

Earth Week Celebration Event by Friends of Retzer Nature Center

Saturday, April 20
10 am - 1 pm
Retzer Nature Center 
Friends of Retzer Nature Center's
Earth Week Celebration Event

Bring the family for kid-friendly activities (inside and outside) focusing on how your actions matter and what you can do to keep our planet safe and clean. The hands-on Recycling Exhibit area will allow visitors to experience the complete route recyclable materials can take in our community and how you can help close the loop on this process.

Free • No registration
Recommended for children and families

Saturday, April 20
11 am - 2 pm
Horwitz-DeRemer Planetarium
Earth Day Planetarium Show:
"Our Violent Planet"

This full-dome show features some of the most catastrophic natural events our world will ever occur.

We live out our lives on our planet's fractured crust "plates" that pull apart, collide, grind past each other, and even sink below one another, producing violent earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and catastrophic walls of water known as tsunamis.  This is a must-see show for all! 

$3.00 per person | Purchase Tickets Here
Ages 10+

Showtimes: 11 am • 11:45 am • 12:30 pm • 1:15 pm

Volunteer Events for the Earth

Saturday, April 20
10 am - 1 pm
Your favorite Waukesha County Park
Waukesha County Parks
Volunteer Clean Up Workday

Litter endangers our environment, our wildlife, and our economy. It pollutes our neighborhoods, decreases property values, and compromises our area's natural beauty.

Grab your loved ones, visit your nearest or dearest Waukesha County Park, and put litter where it belongs!

Required: Register yourself or your group by April 19
Upon request: Safety vests and garbage bags available for your group.
Free admission to any County Park on Saturday, April 20 with registration and participation.

Friday, April 26
9 am - 10 am
10 - 11 am
11 am - noon
Fox Brook Park

Arbor Day Volunteer Tree Planting
Sponsored by Johnson's Nursery

Plant trees with Waukesha County Parks -- it's our new annual tradition!

We'll celebrate Arbor Day and make a difference in our community by planting native trees to enhance and preserve our natural areas. Together our actions go further!

Ages 10+
Learn More
Free admission to Fox Brook Park on Friday April 26 with registration and participation.


Retzer Nature Center

S14 W28167 Madison St., Waukesha, WI 53188 (directions)

Environmental Learning Center
M-F 8 am - 4:30 pm • Sat 10 am - 3 pm
Closed Sundays & County-observed Federal holidays

Retzer Nature Center Grounds
365 days Sunrise - 10 pm

Retzer Nature Center grounds open to all • No requirement for Parks annual membership or daily permit

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