Meadows Foundation Awards $150,000 Grant to Restore Fire-Ravaged Bastrop State Park
DALLAS — Almost two years after a devastating wildfire, signs of new life and activity are springing up once again at Bastrop State Park, thanks in part to the generosity of donors like The Meadows Foundation, which recently awarded the Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation a $150,000 grant to help restore the fire-ravaged park.
The September 2011 wildfires caused widespread destruction and consumed 34,000 acres, including 96 percent (6,381 acres) of Bastrop State Park. The park, a National Historic Landmark and one of the most popular state parks in Texas with an estimated 150,000 visitors annually, suffered catastrophic damage.
The Meadows Foundation grant is part of a total $2 million in federal and private funds raised to restore Bastrop State Park. The grant will be used to control erosion, reconstruct historic structures, and rehabilitate campgrounds and hiking trails. This new grant follows an initial $100,000 gift provided by The Meadows Foundation immediately after the fire.
“We are truly fortunate to have partners like The Meadows Foundation who care deeply about natural treasures like Bastrop State Park,” said Carter Smith, TPWD executive director. “Our agency couldn’t have undertaken a task like this alone, and we applaud their continued commitment to rejuvenating Bastrop State Park so that future generations can enjoy the unique habitats, biological diversity, and visitor amenities of this beloved park.”
Grant funding provided by the Meadows Foundation will support the following projects and activities:
- Reconstruction of two historic Civilian Conservation Corps bridges lost in the fire.
- Rerouting a four mile stretch of the popular Lost Pines Hiking Trail and mitigating erosion through construction of check steps and water bars.
- Reconstruction of 10 primitive campsites destroyed by the fire.
- Supporting American YouthWorks conservation teams who are playing an essential role in reconstruction efforts and volunteer management at the park. American YouthWorks is an Austin-based organization dedicated to empowering at-risk youth through education, service and green jobs training.
- Promoting volunteer efforts for installation of straw logs for erosion control on steep hillsides.
The Meadows Foundation is a private philanthropic institution based in Dallas and established in 1948 by Algur H. and Virginia Meadows to benefit the people of Texas. The Foundation has enriched the lives of countless Texas in the areas of arts and culture, civic and public affairs, education, health, and human services and has also developed current grant making initiatives in support of public education, mental health and the natural environment. Since its inception, the Foundation has disbursed in excess of $760 million in grants and direct charitable expenditures to over 3,000 Texas institutions and agencies. For additional information, visit http://www.mfi.org
Founded in 1991, Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation is the non-profit funding partner of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. The Foundation’s mission is to provide private support to Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and help fulfil the department mission to manage and conserve the natural and cultural resources of Texas and to provide hunting, fishing and outdoor recreation opportunities for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. The Foundation also plays an essential role in conservation education, with scholarship opportunities, internships, and family outdoor activities. Since its inception, the Foundation has raised more than $80 million for Texas conservation and education projects. For additional information, visit http://www.tpwf.org/.