By Alicia Dziak

In Western New York, we’re lucky to have an abundance of natural beauty everywhere we look. From the gorges at Letchworth to the roaring waters of Niagara Falls to the wooded rolling hills of Allegany, there are endless places to explore within our state park system. One day every May, there’s a chance to give back to these places that offer visitors so much in return.

I Love My Park Day, this year being held on May 6, is a statewide event organized by Parks & Trails New York (PTNY) in partnership with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) and local Friends groups, to celebrate and enhance New York’s parks and historic sites and bring visibility to the entire park system and its needs.

Projects being tackled by volunteers on these days include clearing brush from trails, picking up litter, painting cabins and other structures and much more.

Participating area parks in the WNY region include Allegany State Park, Artpark, Evangola State Park, Golden Hill State Park, Knox Farm State Park, Long Point State Park, Niagara Falls State Park, Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve, Whirlpool Park, Wilson Tuscarora State Park. Additional parks in the Finger Lakes region include Catherine Valley Trail, Cayuga Lake State Park, Chimney Bluffs, Fair Haven Beach State Park, Fillmore Glen State Park, Ganondagan State Historic Site, Genesee Valley Greenway, Hamlin Beach State Park, Letchworth State Park, Robert H. Treman State Park, Sampson State Park, Seneca Lake State Park, Sonnenberg Gardens & Mansion – State Historic Park, Stony Brook State Park, Taughannock Falls State Park and Two Rivers State Park Recreation Area.

Spend a few hours volunteering with friends old and new, pack a lunch and enjoy the rest of the day at the park!

For more information, and to sign up, visit