The Friends of Government Canyon, formerly known as Government Canyon Natural
History Association, is much, much more than a friend's group for the State Natural Area. It's fair to say had it not been for this group the Natural Area would not exist. The roots of this volunteer, non-profit organization go back to a group of "dining room table" environmentalists, who, beginning in the late 70's, saw an opportunity to save a huge swath of recharge zone on top of the Edward's Aquifer and to provide much needed green space for an ever sprawling San Antonio city boundary. Their vision of bringing together entities like Texas Parks and Wildlife, San Antonio Water System, Edward's Aquifer Authority, Trust for Public Land, and the governments of the City of San Antonio and Bexar County as well as the generosity of individual donors was and is unprecedented: so many diverse entities pooling resources for the common good - our drinking water. Today, we have evolved into a growing group of active volunteers who take pride in the work we do - from grooming trails to facilitating educational programs to advocating the protection of the Aquifer. Since inception we have recorded more than 200,000 volunteer hours. We are hikers, naturalists, artists, mountain bikers, researchers, equestrians, clean water advocates and in general, lovers of the outdoors with one common mission: protecting and preserving the Natural Area. Here's your chance to get involved and become part of a very worthy cause.
Our mission is to promote resource conservation and preservation through education and low impact recreational activities at Government Canyon State Natural Area.
The Education Committee was established to develop, implement and maintain a comprehensive plan to educate the public about the physical, biological and cultural resources of the Natural Area. This Committee develops and implements Interpretative Programs, which allow the public to learn more about a variety of relevant topics. Aside from an Interpretive Tour Guide Program under development, additional programs will be developed as funding and volunteer support become more readily available.
The Recreation Committee was founded to promote sustainable usage for the many user groups who enjoy the Natural Area. This has included helping the Texas Parks & Wildlife staff to prepare and groom over 31 miles of the Natural Area trails as well as supporting public programs requiring volunteer support and leadership. This committee is now working to design and develop organized recreational activities for visitors.
The Public Relations Committee is responsible for preparing communications to publicize our activities and programs, supporting any and all committee work requiring the use of public information, and representing the Organization in matters related to public advocacy such as Aquifer protection.
- Helping Texas Parks & Wildlife maintain the Natural Area
- Offering Natural Area "experiences" such as Imagining the Canyon
( an event which brought together hundreds of public influencers,
artists and advocates to learn more about the Natural Area and to
interpret the experience to others)
- Recording the history of the Natural Area in a documentary
- Offering public outreach programs like "Girl World" to expose youth to