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‘Earth Day Celebration’ back at Great Bend Zoo on April 22

Approximately 1,600 people attended the inaugural Great Bend Earth Day Celebration, held last year at Great Bend Zoo. Such a successful event begs the question, what can be done for an encore? Earth Day Celebration organizers are ready to embark on that challenge.

Three Great Bend businesses, located on north Main Street, are joining efforts once again to host Great Bend Earth Day Celebration this spring at Great Bend Zoo. The Zoo, Rosewood ECycle, and Great Bend Dairy Queen have scheduled the event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on April 22.

“Last year was so incredible that it will be hard to match those numbers again,” said Great Bend Zoo Curator Ashley Burdick. “But I’m confident we will have another successful event, and even have the opportunity to offer more this year, compared to last year.” 

Great Bend Earth Day Celebration benefited last year by Smoky Hills PBS incorporating its “Family Fun Day” into the event that included an appearance by Curious George who met and mingled with children. He was a popular draw to go along with booths and activities by Rosewood ECycle, Heartland Farm, Kansas Wetlands Education Center, Great Bend Zoological Society, Women for Kansas, and the ‘Read With Me’ program in Great Bend. 

Many of those same vendors have expressed interest in returning for this year’s Earth Day event, which is geared toward children, but all family members are welcome to participate. Great Bend Dairy Queen will once again issue a coupon for a free kid’s cone to all youth participants that day.   “We’re excited that many of last year’s vendors have committed to returning this spring,” said Burdick. “We encourage other businesses and organizations to sign up and celebrate this day with us. We anticipate a lot of children and families will attend again this year.” 

Burdick said Great Bend Zoo can supply tables for vendor booths. In case of inclement weather, the staff will also offer indoor vendor space.

Great Bend Earth Day Celebration, which occurs on the official 53rd anniversary of Earth Day, is a come-and-go event that is free to the public. Businesses and organizations that want to participate in the celebration can contact Burdick at 620-793-4226, or e-mail her at The deadline for booth sign-up is April 1.