Girl scouts at the NPLD event at Rock Creek Park

National Public Lands Day Frequently Asked Questions

About NPLD

Organizing an NPLD Event

Volunteering at NPLD

NPLD Partners and Supporters



What is National Public Lands Day (NPLD)?

National Public Lands Day (NPLD) is the nation’s largest, single-day volunteer event for public lands. It is held annually on the fourth Saturday in September. NPLD is also a “fee-free day”—entrance fees are waived at national parks and other public lands. NEEF (National Environmental Education Foundation) coordinates National Public Lands Day.

NPLD brings together hundreds of thousands of individual and organizational volunteers to help restore the country’s public lands. These are the places Americans use for outdoor recreation, education, and just plain enjoyment. The lands encompass national parks, monuments, wildlife refuges, forests, grasslands, marine sanctuaries, lakes, and reservoirs, as well as state, county, and city parks that are managed by public agencies, but that belong to and are enjoyed by all of us.

Through volunteer service on National Public Lands Day as well as grant support to local organizations, NEEF helps ensure people of all ages and abilities connect with public lands for recreation, hands-on learning, and community-building—now and in the future.



When is NPLD?

The 26th annual National Public Lands Day celebration will take place on Saturday, September 26, 2020. The date is different every year and falls on the fourth Saturday in September.



What has NPLD accomplished?

NPLD has been growing steadily for over 25 years as has its positive impact on our public lands. Check out the 2019 NPLD Impact Report



What is the National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF)?

NEEF is a nonprofit organization that was chartered by Congress in 1990 to partner with the EPA to advance environmental literacy nationwide.  NEEF works to make the environment more accessible, relatable, relevant, and connected to the daily lives of all Americans. NEEF is the national coordinator for NPLD and works with federal and nonprofit partners to organize and promote their NPLD events as well as offer grants and incentives for conservation activities. NEEF's interactive map is also the definitive location for Site Managers and volunteers to locate NPLD events happening near them.



How can people stay informed about NPLD?

You can visit or bookmark our website, as well as follow us on Facebook and Twitter. The hashtag is #NPLD

Email with any questions or for more information about National Public Lands Day.



Who participates in NPLD?

NPLD brings together hundreds of thousands of individual to help restore the country’s public lands at the federal, state, and local level. Participating federal agencies include the US Bureau of Land Management, Department of Defense, National Park Service, US Army Corps of Engineers, US Department of the Interior, US Fish and Wildlife Service, and USDA Forest Service.



What are the benefits of hosting an NPLD event?

There are many reasons for a public land to consider hosting an NPLD event. With its status as the nation's largest one-day volunteer event for public lands, NPLD receives considerable attention and press at the local and national level. Its prominence serves as a catalyst to attract new volunteers and visitors to your public land. Once a person is introduced to your park as a volunteer, they will want to return again and again.



I am not with a federal public land. Can I still hold an NPLD event?

Yes! Any state, local, country or regional public land can host an NPLD event. School grounds and community gardens can also participate. There is no limitation on the size or the managing agency of the public land. As long as the land is held in the public trust (no private land) and accessible to the public, it can be an NPLD site.



This is the first time I am hosting an NPLD event. Are there resources to help me as I plan my event?

Yes! The NPLD website is loaded with helpful resources, tips and ideas for leading an NPLD event including a Site Manager Promotional Toolkit:



Are there a minimum number of volunteers required to register an event for NPLD?

No! Events range from small family trail clean-ups to 500 person mega-events that mobilize entire communities.



How can I register my event?

You will need to create an account as a Site Manager, which is free and easy to do. Simply visit the Site Manager page and follow the instructions to create an account and register your NPLD event. With an account, you can create, edit, publish and save events, reusing them annually. You will be able to include event details, photos, and all important contact and sign up information about your event. You will also receive important information about NPLD.



Where should interested volunteers go to find my event online?

Volunteers should use NEEF's interactive map,  which is the definitive location for volunteers to locate NPLD events.



What should I do if I forgot my username/password?

Send an email to and include your full name, place of employment, and email address so we can retrieve your username and reset your password.



What do volunteers do?

Volunteers plant trees and native vegetation, build and refurbish trails, remove trash and invasive plants, repair bridges, restore historic structures, monitor endangered species, and restore habitats.



What's in it for volunteers?

National Public Lands Day is a fantastic opportunity to get off the couch and out into beautiful natural settings. Volunteers can participate as a family or with school, community, or national groups such as the Student Conservation Association, Outdoor Nation, Boy Scouts of America, or Girl Scouts of the USA. The event is a great opportunity to get kids outside and help erase the “nature deficit” among the next generation.All volunteers will get the satisfaction that comes from preserving and protecting their favorite public places, along with the physical exercise and family togetherness of a day full of enhancing, planting, and beautifying.



What kind of work projects apply towards NPLD?

Any project that benefits the public land can be registered for NPLD. The majority of projects are focused on habitat restoration such as tree plantings, trash or invasive plant removal, bird or bat house construction, trail maintenance, fence removal and gardening. Historic sites typically host beautification projects including trash pick-ups, painting, sculpture renovation and other needed projects.

Some public lands do not have the ability to host volunteer events. In these cases, the public land usually holds education programming. Examples include hikes, talks on public land issues, fishing derbys, festivals, classes on water quality testing and geocaching programs.



Who supports NPLD?

While NEEF is the national coordinator, Toyota Motor North America is the national sponsor of National Public Lands Day.

NPLD has seven federal agency partners: US Bureau of Land Management, Department of Defense, National Park Service, US Army Corps of Engineers, US Department of the Interior, US Fish and Wildlife Service, and USDA Forest Service. Other participants include more than 250 state, county, city, university, and school partners, as well as many parks and recreation departments.



Why is Toyota participating?
Toyota Motor North America has been the national sponsor of NPLD for over 20 years.  Every year, Toyota encourages its employees to get involved in NPLD at the nation’s parks, forests, rivers, beaches, shorelines, and other public lands. Since 1999, more than 4,000 Toyota employees and their families have volunteered at more than 470 different sites on National Public Lands Day.