Making a Difference on Public Lands


On Saturday, September 25, 2021, over 40,000 volunteers participated in community engagement events at more than 500 public lands sites across the country.

28TH Annual National Public Lands Day

Participants joined in trail building projects, coastal and parked clean-ups, guided hikes, and other outdoor fun. Some dug in with rakes, clippers, shovels, and hoes. Others went in with gloves and trash bags. And still, more grabbed binoculars, laced up hiking boots, or strapped on bicycle helmets in celebration of the 28th annual National Public Lands Day.

2021 Focus on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

NEEF partnered with four groups focused on connecting people to nature—particularly people from communities that are often underrepresented in the outdoor space, such as communities of color, LBGTQ+, and non-English speaking communities.

NEEF has historically had a strong commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and we are excited to partner with groups that are focused on engaging underrepresented communities in the outdoors.

Tony Richardson, director of Public Lands Engagement at NEEF

National Public Lands Day
2021 NPLD Video

Corazón Latino, Pride Outside, Disabled & Outdoors, U.S. Department of Arts and Culture, and NEEF produced a series of webinars focused on creating more inclusive NPLD events. Watch the "Nature for All" webinars in our NPLD resources.

Along with the webinars, NEEF and the U.S. Department of Arts and Culture launched the Guide to Indigenous Land Acknowledgements to help NPLD site managers understand and perform land acknowledgments during NPLD events. 

NPLD Impacts

NPLD Events
Value of Volunteer Work



Conservation IMPACTs

Green shovel with dark blue handle


Square Feet of Invasive Species Removed

Funding communities
Three trees


Trees and Flowers Planted

increasing competence
Green recycling can/bin icon


Pounds of Trash Collected

Home with solar roof with sun shining in background


Public Facilities Built or Maintained

supporting diversity
Mountain with flag on top surrounded by green forest


Acres of Public Lands Restored

Person running in mountain


Miles of Trails and Rivers Maintained

a group of women in a field collect seeds from native plants while volunteering on national public lands day

NPLD Highlighted Sites Focus on Community and Connection in the Wake of COVID-19

With support from Toyota, NEEF developed the Highlighted Site Sponsorship to foster innovative NPLD events throughout the nation that showcase the diversity of America’s public lands and the people who care for them. This year, 23 such events were recognized as Highlighted Sites. Of this special group, two events, in particular, exemplified the full potential of NPLD—not just as a way to give back to the green spaces that provided respite during the COVID-19 pandemic, but as a welcoming environment for fostering community and rebuilding connections after more than a year in isolation.

Read more how the Ice Age National Scenic Trail in Wisconsin and the Ice Age Trail Alliance reconvened its Trailtessa series, a retreat for women on the trails, for the first time since March 2020 to volunteer for a native seed-collecting project which garnered approximately 80 pounds of seeds. Also see how an urban community makes the most of its municipal green space, with a NPLD event in Chicago at the Skinner Park and the Loomis Street Community Garden, the only public garden in this rapidly gentrifying area.

NPLD Highlighted Sites Focus on Community and Connection in the Wake of COVID-19

On the fourth Saturday in September each year, NEEF joins forces with its longtime partner Toyota Motor North...

NPLD 2021 Highlighted Site Sponsorship Winners

With generous support from Toyota Motor North America, the National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF)...

We think NPLD has a great message that syncs with the overall goals of our organization—volunteers working to preserve, safeguard, and advocate for our public lands and spaces.

May Toy, president of the Skinner Park Advisory Council

NPLD Stories

Read how volunteers, site managers, families, and more spent their time volunteering for National Public Lands Day.

National Public Lands Day 2021 Set to Bring Out Volunteers Throughout the Country

Organized by the National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF), this year's celebration highlights...

2021 National Public Lands Day Department of Defense Awards Grantees

In commemoration of this year's National Public Lands Day, the Department of Defense, through the Office of...

Love Your Local Park? Set Up an NPLD Event to Take Care of It!

Whether you’re a park employee who loves preserving public lands or simply someone who has fond memories of...



group of volunteers on National Public Lands Day stand in the water planting mangroves
Make an Impact
Support NPLD

Thank you for your interest in National Public Lands Day (NPLD) sponsorship! NEEF is offering several opportunities for you to support this exciting event. Contact our team to learn more.

National Corporate Sponsor

Toyota logo

Other Sponsors

International Paper
International Paper logo

Federal Partners

National Park Service Logo
Bureau of Land Management
Bureau of Land Management Logo
USDA Forest Service
USDA Forest Service logo
US Army Corps of Engineers
US Army Corps of Engineers logo
US Fish and Wildlife Service
US Fish and Wildlife Service Logo
US Department of Interior Bureau of Reclaimation
US Department of the Interior Bureau of Reclaimation