(NC) Wonderful weather is still in full swing all across the country, even as kids gear up to go school. While it lasts, get friends and family together and enjoy the great outdoors with these three fun eco-friendly ideas.

1. Go for a picnic. All of our provinces and territories have scenic spots where we can unroll a blanket, set out a spread and dine al fresco. It’s a delicious way to make the most of our short warm weather season and to catch up with loved ones in the fresh air. Keep the love for your location going by using reusable dishes, cups and utensils. They’re easy to wash once you’re back at home and you won’t risk ruining your pretty picnic spot by leaving anything behind to threaten wildlife or damage the ecosystem.

2. Go for a stroll, a hike or a bike ride. Spectacular scenery is our national calling card — from coast to coast to coast, we’ve got wild places and pretty panoramas that’ll take your breath away. Choose one near you, load essentials in your backpack and make a day of it. Bring a local nature book to identify interesting trees or birds you spot along the way. Stay safe by letting someone know your plans and always pack out what you pack in. Don’t leave your litter behind.

3. Clean a shoreline. No matter where in Canada you live, there’s a shoreline in your community. That’s anywhere that land meets water, whether it’s a river, coastline, pond or stream — even a storm drain counts. Shoreline litter is a threat to aquatic life and ecosystems because it can leach harmful chemicals into the water, be eaten accidentally by wildlife, and entangle aquatic animals such as turtles, birds, fish and marine mammals.

The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup is the country’s largest direct-action conservation initiative, organized by the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre and WWF-Canada and presented by Loblaw Companies Limited. Across the country, people are doing their part to remove litter from shorelines before it can harm our freshwater and marine ecosystems. Join them any time of year to reconnect with nature and make a real difference in the health of your local waters.

Learn more or register to clean your local shoreline online at shorelinecleanup.ca.

www.newscanada.com