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TPWD News Release — Sept. 1, 2009

Take Me Outdoors Houston Set For Oct. 10 At Discovery Green

Event Is Houston’s First Free, Family-Oriented Festival of the Outdoors

At a time when people in big cities are becoming increasingly disconnected from the world of nature and the outdoors, Take Me Outdoors Houston on Oct. 10 at Discovery Green will offer Houston’s first free, family-oriented festival of the outdoors.

Exhibitors will provide hands-on activities, booths and opportunities to engage audiences who haven’t ever or don’t often get exposure to the great outdoors — especially the resources located right in Houston’s big backyard.

"By introducing Texans, especially urban adults and kids, to outdoor recreation, our woods and waters and natural places become more relevant and important to them," said Heidi Rao, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department hunter education specialist in Houston. "We believe recreation leads to conservation. If they’re out there enjoying the natural world, they come to care about it and finally to care for it."

Take Me Outdoors Houston will take place from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Sat. Oct. 10 at Discovery Green, a 12-acre park created by a public/private partnership between the City of Houston and the non-profit Discovery Green Conservancy. The park’s mission is to provide a beautiful, urban green space in the heart of Houston that serves as a village green for the city. It is located across Avenida de las Americas from the George R. Brown Convention Center and the Hilton Americas Hotel, sitting between the Toyota Center and Minute Maid Park. Since the park opened in April 2008, it has welcomed more than 1 million visitors and hosted more than 800 public and private events.

Take Me Outdoors Houston will consist of a variety of exhibitors clustered in topical zones.

The Nature & Environmental Zone will include the TPWD State Parks Division, TPWD Texas Outdoor Family Program, Houston Zoo, Texas Master Naturalist Program, Katy Prairie Conservancy, Armand Bayou Nature Center, Houston Wilderness, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, Galveston Bay Estuary Program, Jesse Jones Park and Nature Center, Wildlife Rehabilitation, Nature Heritage Society, and the Sierra Club.

The Hunting & Wildlife Conservation Zone will include the TPWD Hunter Education Program, TPWD Wildlife Division, Houston Gulf Coast Safari Club International, Gulf Coast Quail Forever, Ducks Unlimited, National Wild Turkey Federation, Texas Wildlife Association, and the Junior Anglers and Hunters of America.

The Target Zone will consist of the Texas National Archery in the Schools Program archery range and the Laser Shot Shooting Simulator.

The Fishing & Aquatic Conservation Zone will include the TPWD Coastal Fisheries Division, TPWD Angler Education Program, TPWD Boater Education Program, and Landry’s Downtown Aquarium in Houston.

There will also be two educational demonstrations of live hawks and other raptors in flight by master falconer John Karger of "Last Chance Forever — the Bird of Prey Conservancy" based in San Antonio.

For more information about Take Me Outdoors Houston, see the Discovery Green Web site or call (713) 400-7336. For general information about ways urban families can reconnect with nature and the outdoors, see the Life’s Better Outside Web site.


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