One reason The Parklands was created is for people to have a beautiful place to spend time with friends and family. We are honored to be chosen as a place for people to share very special moments in their lives. Whether it’s planning a wedding at one of our beautiful venues, booking a birthday party in our pavilions, or finding a quiet place to memorialize a loved one, we love that we can provide a beautiful, clean space.
Unfortunately, we have noticed some special events that have gotten a little messy. As an interpretive ranger here at the park, I love taking kids on guided hikes. All of us will be walking along when suddenly it happens. First, you come across one piece of brightly-colored paper, and then you see the unmistakable remnants of a confetti cannon—hundreds of little pieces of paper littered across an otherwise beautiful landscape. Even the children notice and point out very quickly that this is wrong. It’s something that is sure to disrupt anyone’s experience in the park.
The remnants of gender reveals, birthday parties and other celebrations can pose even more of a threat to wildlife that may mistake a brightly colored piece of paper for food. It’s something the staff here encounter far too often and spend countless hours trying to pick up or clean up.
While we love that people come to the park to celebrate a big life moment, we must ask a party favor. Please consider a more eco-friendly alternative to commemorate your special occasion. For example, when planning a gender reveal, many options can surprise the expecting parents without leaving behind a lasting reminder to all park visitors. Present the couple with an appropriately colored gift they can use when the baby is born, play a song that reveals the gender, or make food that shows a color when they take a bite.
Confetti celebrations happen quickly, but their remnants stick around much much longer if not picked up.
Skip things that involve a lot of waste like confetti cannons, balloon releases, or dumping tons of glitter. Remember that bio-degradable alternatives can take a long time to break down and will still leave a mess long after the party has ended. Please avoid anything that can stain like silly string or paint and, of course, don’t do anything involving fire! Instead, do something that everyone can enjoy, like cake, everybody loves cake!
Whatever you choose, please remember to practice one of the cardinal rules of The Parklands, and any other public space—Leave No Trace. Carry out what you carry in to help keep our parks clean—and safe!—for everyone.
Olivia started working at The Parklands as an Interpretive Ranger in 2018. She graduated with a degree in outdoor recreation and environmental studies from Central Michigan University where she played field hockey for four years. She worked for an outdoor therapy company in Wisconsin before returning home to Louisville to begin her position at The Parklands. Her favorite things about her job are helping kids explore the creek and getting to experience the joy and wonder of the kids when they get comfortable with nature. In her free time, she enjoys, hiking, paddling, plants, spending time with her family, and playing with her dogs.
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