Archive for the 'State Parks' Category

Why Parks Benefit People

Thursday, December 5th, 2019
Walt Dabney takes a stroll on his mountain bike.

Walt Dabney takes a stroll on his mountain bike.

This is passport to Texas

From 1999 until his retirement in 2010, Walt Dabney served as Texas State Park Director, leaving behind an improved state park system that observers say ranks among the nation’s best and most innovative.

Walt lives in Moab Utah now, but visited Texas Parks and Wildlife Department recently. He told me that he will forever have a soft spot for the parks and people he left behind.

As to why we need parks, Walt says they’re places where we can protect our natural resources, while at the same time benefitting the well-being of the citizens of Texas.

Well, people want to recreate. I mean they want places to go be outside, to enjoy a variety of different activities. Whether it’s fishing or camping or hiking or biking or boating of some kind. In a place like Texas, other than the parks, if you don’t own a ranch, or have access to one you have no place to go do any of that. And I think a lot of those people understand that there’s more to life that just sitting int eh house or walking down the sidewalk. So parks provide a place for people to go do those fun kind of outdoor things which are good for them both mentally as well as physically.

Texas state parks are for everyone. Find a park near you when you visit texasstateparks.org.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Gifts for the Conservation Minded

Wednesday, December 4th, 2019

Give a gift of the outdoors. [Big Bend Ranch State Park]

This is Passport to Texas

Holiday gift giving season is upon us, and if you have nature lovers on your list—the giving is easy—and twice as nice.

A seventy-dollar Texas State Parks Pass is a thoughtful gift for your outdoor enthusiast. Pass holders enjoy twelve months of unlimited visits to more than ninety state parks and historic sites. They also get discounts on camping and recreational equipment rentals. Money spent on the pass supports your Texas state parks.

For thirty dollars each, you can give the drivers on your list a conservation license plate. Twenty-two dollars from every sale goes directly to help fund conservation efforts in Texas.

Give every outdoor lover on your list access to more than a million acres of public land—with the Limited Use Permit—for the ridiculously reasonable price of twelve dollars.

Permit holders receive twelve months of access to Texas’ wildlife management areas, where they can fish, hike, bird watch, cycle, and camp.

When you give one of these gifts, you delight the receiver, and help support state parks and conservation in Texas.

Of course, you can always give the gift of yourself to those you love by spending time with them outdoors, away from the hustle and bustle of modern living—if only for a few hours.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Holiday Fun Awaits You in State Parks

Tuesday, December 3rd, 2019
Barrington Farm Christmas

Barrington Farm Christmas

This is Passport to Texas

The holiday season is a special time to visit your state parks. Parks throughout Texas offer festive activities that could cause even old Scrooge, himself, to crack a smile.

During the entire month of December enjoy History in Lights with a beautiful evening stroll through the grounds of Mission Espiritu Santo at Goliad State Park and Historic Site. Festivities begin at 6 p.m. each night.

On December 7th Celebrate Christmas at Mr. Buck’s historic ranch home at South Llano River SP in Junction, and decorate trees, take pictures with Santa, and sing Christmas tunes on the front porch, and more!

On December 13th it’s a Pineywoods Christmas Drive-thru at Tyler State Park. Drive through the Cedar Point, Lakeview and Big Pine Camping Loops; enjoy a Pineywoods Christmas in lights. Campers staying at the park for this event are encouraged to decorate their sites.

On December 15th, head to Johnson City and join the Texas Hill Country community for the 50th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting at LBJ State park and Historic site, started by President and Mrs. Johnson. Enjoy carolers, a live nativity, Santa Claus, refreshments, and of course, the spectacular tree lighting.

Check out the calendar section of the Texas parks and wildlife website for more holiday events at state parks.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti

Centennial Artist Clemente Guzman

Thursday, October 31st, 2019
Centennial Artist, Clemente Guzman

Centennial Artist, Clemente Guzman

This is Passport to Texas

I love nature. I love being outside.

Artist Clemente Guzman has a genuine affection for the outdoors. He spent twenty-nine and a half years at Texas Parks and Wildlife depicting the natural beauty of the state.

I create art because it inspires me, it moves me, and being out in nature does that to me. It has that magic. You know when you have it, because you can’t sleep. You know you get up. It’s like falling in love. You know, you’re just thinking of that all the time.

Now Clemente has come out of retirement for a higher calling. He’s one of thirty-one centennial artists chosen to commemorate the one-hundredth anniversary of Texas State Parks. Government Canyon State Park is his first assignment.

I went out there to Government Canyon and I did some of the trails, especially one of them that goes to the dinosaur tracks. And I took some pictures and got my mind thinking. I found this lizard that I though it would be a great idea to put him inside of a dinosaur track. It just fit beautifully, the angle of the lizard and the footprint. I’m going to paint that for Government Canyon.

The centennial artists will cover sixty-two parks in all, and their work will be featured in a printed book to be published in the centennial year 2023.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Centennial Artists and Texas State Parks

Wednesday, October 30th, 2019
Texas State Parks.

Texas State Parks.

This is Passport to Texas

The year 2023 is the centennial anniversary of Texas State Parks, and thirty-one Texas artists have been chosen to create illustrations for a printed book about the State Park System.

The whole history of conservation in the United States, particularly in the national parks, it was aided and abetted by artists.

Former Texas Parks and Wildlife executive director Andy Sansom is project organizer and co-author of the centennial book.

They are all Texas artists. Each one of them will paint two paintings. There will be sixty-two parks in the book. And then the text will be written by me and my colleague Bill Reaves. And Bill will write mainly about the artists, and then my portion of the book will be about the State Park System. ‘Be a little bit of history, a little bit of personal reflection on my own experiences, a little bit about contemporary issues facing state parks, and celebration of the hundredth anniversary.

The paintings will be offered for sale, and a portion of the proceeds will go to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation to benefit the State Park System.

The book is scheduled to come out during the centennial year, along with an initial public exhibition of the paintings at the Bullock Texas State History Museum in Austin.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.