Let’s celebrate the European Day of Parks 2021!
Every year on the 24th of May we celebrate the European Day of Parks. This year we will look at “Parks: The Next Generation”. Get a taste of what’s being organised:
Whilst the restrictions due to the corona pandemic are slowly lifted across the EU, it is clear that this year’s European Day of Parks is still be a bit different from other years. However, does this stop us from championing the amazing work of Protected Areas in Europe? Definitely not! That is why we were happy to see that so many of our members send us video messages from their Parks. We’ve learned about different educational programmes, new ways of managing visitors and saw how youth across Europe is active in their Parks. Additionally, we found out how Parks across Europe responded to the corona crisis, what lessons they have learned and how they are getting ready for The Next Generation.
We want to thank all our members for sending us their video messages!
With restrictions still in place across Europe, events were fewer throughout Europe. However, leave it to Parks and Protected Areas to find ways to celebrate nonetheless!
Tiny Tales in The Netherlands
How can we make sure The Next Generation finds their way to National Parks? Well, by taking them on an adventure of course! That is why EUROPARC’s member IVN organised the “Tiny Tales” competition in The Netherlands. The competition is aimed at elementary schools across the country. Teachers can sign their class up and they will receive a special educational package with fun and interesting facts about the National Parks in The Netherlands. School children can then pick their “adventure animal”, write a story about the adventures it has in a National Park and draw a picture. Their teacher will submit on of these stories to IVN and the winning school class will win a visit to the “Nature School” in either National Park Hollandse Duinen or National Park Lauwersmeer.
Webinar by EUROPARC Spain
There is no denying that many of The Next Generation of Parks will need to be prepared for the challenges and opportunities Climate Change brings. This is why EUROPARC Spain is organising the webinar “Protected Areas for Climate Change adaptation, health and environmental education”. The webinar looks at the “new generation” of Parks, that are called upon to face new global challenges that need local responses, with new approaches that enrich the progress made, by incorporating new generations of active, creative and committed people.
Poster Competition in Austria
National Park Hohe Tauern is organising a poster competition for schools cooperating with the National Park. Through the poster the National Park gives children and young people the opportunity to show what they want from a National Park in the future. Their partner schools in Salzburg, Tyrol and Carinthia are invited to participate. On the European Day of Parks NP Hohe Tauern will award the winner of the competition. Additionally, the posters will be presented in one of their visitor centers.
Online competition on Biodiversity in Poland
Roztocze National Park (RNP) in Poland also got creative and adapted to the current situation. To still allow young people (and adults!) to learn more about biodiversity, they National Park set up an online competition on biological diversity of the RNP. The introduction to the competition is a poem entitled “Spring of Roztocze” which describes the biodiversity of Roztocze in an amusing way. The aim of the competition is to stimulate the imagination of the young generation and raise the knowledge of the biological diversity of the RNP by participating in the application on the colors and sounds of the RNP amphibians.
Wildlife in the garden in Hungary
Balaton-felvidéki National Park is organising a free guided walk aimed specifically at schools and families! This interactive and playful walk will present the Park’s environment and fauna, even those we don’t notice it at all.
Working outside in Finland
Finland is looking not just at the Next Generation of Parks, but also the next generation of work! Working outside, having a virtual meeting by the camp fire in the outdoor/hiking area with colleagues is a good way to combine outdoor life, work and safe social life with workmates. In Kurjenrahka National Park Outdoor Leaders will get together partners. The meeting is open for every one, who likes to work outside and have a working day some where middle of the nature.
Discover what Latvian Protected Area suits you best
Youth+ in Latvia have created an online quiz that allows you to find out which Protected Area in Latvia suits you best! What is your favorite activity? Do you prefer water, woods, or meadows? What food are you craving? Answering these questions will help you find out where to go for the European Day of Parks. You can take it here.
Transatlantic cooperation in Slovenia
To create The Next Generation of Parks, we will need to learn from each other! Sister Parks Triglav National Park in Slovenia and Crater Lake National Park will organize a virtual event about their cooperation with educational institutions and youth. Everyone can follow on Facebook live on May 26th2021 at 10:00 Pacific time (GMT-7) / at 19:00 Central European Time (GMT + 2)
Many events organised in Spain
Spain is the absolute front runner in organised events this European Day of Parks! Junta de Andalucia, the Network of Natural Parks in Catalonia (Xarxa de Parcs Naturals de Catalunya) and the Nature Parks Service of Barcelona Provincial Council (Diputació de Barcelona) and Natural Parks of Valencia have organised many events. From presentations on ecotourism in Parks, workshops, exhibitions, awareness-raising activities around nature, to the studying of owls, there is loads to see and discover.
This is just a small overview of all the events organised in Europe! There are many more events to discover in Romania, Hungary, Estonia, Czech Republic and other countries in and outside of Europe. You can find them all here.
Can’t go to your favorite Park?
Then celebrate with us online! You can tag @europarc on Facebook and Twitter and @europarc_federation on Instagram or use #EuropeanDayOfParks to see what is happening around Europe.