Happy Arbor Day!  This now national holiday is one that Nebraska can claim since it began here 131 years ago.  The celebration of trees!  Originally observed on April 22nd (the founder, J. Sterling Morton’s birthday), now this day is celebrated on the last Friday in April.

Since this holiday happens to fall during the same week as Earth Day, many celebrations are taking place across the area to perpetuate being “more green.”  If you have enough time in your schedule, hopefully you can attend one or two events.

Nebraska City trees

Not surprisingly in Nebraska City, the origin of Arbor Day, they have a two day celebration full of all sorts of opportunities to enjoy trees.  You can take your pick of all sorts of hands-on activities and definitely do not want to miss “The Discovery Ride” to learn more about the importance of trees.  By the way, I have heard that if you attend, you will be in good company.  In other words – lots of people do go to these events, so you may want to wear good walking shoes in case you have to park some distance away.

In Lincoln, tomorrow at Pioneers Park there is a great event planned to celebrate nature.  This info is directly from their website.

2nd Annual Wild Adventure Day
Saturday, April 25 | 10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Free! Everyone is invited!

Activities for all ages will be set-up throughout the Nature Center:

  • Raptor Recovery show at 11:00 am
  • Up-close encounters with reptiles and raptors
  • Learn about aquatic life and bird watch
  • Explore the children’s garden and outdoor classroom
  • Hike out in the prairie, into the woods, and along wetlands
  • Food vendors, music, and other entertainment
  • Winner of the Nebraska Wildlife Federation Poster Contest announced at noon.


Today Lauritzen Gardens is having a TREEmendous Arbor Day celebration.  Although you may have missed being the first 100 entrants to get a free seedling, you are still in time to participate in one of my favorite ways.  If your kids dress up like a tree, they get in free.  If you go and do this, PLEASE post pictures on the Odyssey Through Nebraska Facebook Page.  I think it would be a fun day to go there just to see kids all dressed up.

This afternoon, events are taking place at Florence Community Center. Although many of their Earth Day events were earlier this week, Fontenelle Forest in Bellevue has fun activities throughout the week-end.  Interestingly enough, Nebraska Furniture Mart is having some special activities for the kids tomorrow (4/25) morning.  Sarpy County Earth Day celebration is tomorrow.  Thanks to Family Fun in Omaha for the heads up on some of these events.

Note: Tomorrow, the Edgerton Explorit Center in Aurora is having a celebration of kites – a great way to celebrate the earth.  Perhaps not the best way to celebrate trees since kites do not work well them, but …

A guidebook to celebrate Arbor Day can be found on their website.  To learn more about Arbor Day and the Mortons, you can read this online book.



Author: neodyssey

My name is Gretchen Garrison. I started this blog about Nebraska in 2013. So far, I have written three books about Nebraska and Lincoln.