|  TPWD News Releases Dated 2012-04-04                                    |
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[ Note: This item is more than seven years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ]
[ Additional Contacts: Dianne Powell, Sellmark, (210) 824-9474 dpsellmark@aol.com ]
April 4, 2012
San Jacinto Day Festival and Battle Reenactment Set April 21
Battle recognized as one of the top ten battles of the world to change history
LA PORTE - Houston, TX -- Booming cannons, cracking musket fire, thundering hooves and battle cries will resound across the San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site on Saturday, April 21, as hundreds of history re-enactors recreate the events leading up to Texas winning its independence from Mexico at the Battle of San Jacinto.
This dramatic battle re-enactment is the centerpiece of the admission-free San Jacinto Day Festival, that takes place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the grounds surrounding the San Jacinto Monument. Sponsored by the San Jacinto Museum of History, Texas Parks & Wildlife Department and the San Jacinto Volunteers, the festival is a full day of music, entertainment, food, games and fun set amidst living history.
The battle re-enactment, which is the most popular event of the day, begins at 3 p.m. Presented by hundreds of members of the San Jacinto Volunteers and other living history organizations from across the state, the re-enactment dramatizes the decisive battle where Gen. Sam Houston led his Texian soldiers to victory over the Mexican Army, eventually leading to almost 1 million square miles of Mexican territory becoming a part of the United States. The re-enactors will dramatically interpret the Runaway Scrape (Texians fleeing from the advancing forces of Mexican Gen. Santa Anna), the cannon duel and the final battle between the two forces. General Houston will be played by his descendent, Sam Houston IV.
"It is so important to our mission that we are able to present this living, dynamic reenactment of Texas history for free, and that would not be possible without our chief sponsor H-E-B, as well as The Dow Chemical Company, Vopak, Pasadena Strawberry Festival, and Lyondell Basell," says Larry Spasic, San Jacinto Museum of History President. "Just as important are our partners who help us coordinate this event, including the volunteers from San Jacinto College, Deer Park ISD and La Porte EMS."
All festival activities are updated continually on the San Jacinto Museum of History website at www.sanjacinto-museum.org. Some of the entertainment and educational activities will include:
--New this year: Solero Flamenco presents a "fiery, passionate and virtuoso flamenco performance," led by founders Irma La Paloma and Jeremías García
--Last Chance Forever, The Birds of Prey Conservancy, shows its magnificent birds including hawks, owls, eagles, falcons and vultures.
--The Celtaire String Band performs Americana period music using a variety of instruments including the fiddle, penny whistle, guitar, mandolin, spoons, scrub-board and limberjacks.
--Dan Barth will use his Medicine Show Wagon to tell the tales of special 19th century cure-all elixirs, and entertain with a little magic.
--Blacksmiths, weavers, spinners, quilters and other demonstrators will give visitors a full sense of how life was in the early 1800s. Sutlers (civilians who sold provisions to military posts) will be on hand to sell or show their wares. The Tiny Town Texas display shows how towns were laid out in the 1800s.
--Texas Parks & Wildlife Department will offer free archery classes for young people.
--Visitors can also visit the restored marshlands and look for otters, great blue herons, osprey, mottled ducks and American avocets. The marsh is historically important because it barred the escape of many of General Santa Anna's troops during the 1836 battle.
--Texas Independence Square Dancers--square dancers from various groups throughout Texas--will demonstrate square dancing and give lessons.
--Visitors can browse through the vendor area to admire unique hand-crafted items, Texas products and history-related items.
--For a slight charge, festival goers can view the Making a Mark, Leaving a Legacy exhibit in the Monument looks at the tools that have traditionally been used to make a mark, the people that have left a mark on our region, and the symbols that our predecessors used to convey important ideas and concepts.
--Monument visitors can take the famous 489-foot elevator ride to the top of the Monument; enjoy the digital presentation Texas Forever!! The Battle of San Jacinto; and view the museum's latest exhibit Making a Mark, Leaving a Legacy. Combo tickets for the elevator ride, the exhibit and movie can be purchased for $12 for adults, $10.50 for seniors, $8 for children.
--Battleship TEXAS, the first battleship memorial museum in the U.S., is located in the park and open for visitors. Fees for the Battleship TEXAS are $12 for adults, $6 for seniors, $3 for school and youth groups with a reservation, and free for children 12 and younger.
The Children's Area--sponsored by The Dow Chemical Company and Deer Park ISD--includes:
--A 55' train complete with train whistle and Texan and American flags.
--Make-and-take history activities and crafts created by Gifted/Talented specialists from Deer Park ISD; overseen by volunteer teachers from DPISD and student volunteers from San Jacinto College.
--The Houston ZooMobile with animals native to Texas, interesting demonstrations and nature games.
--Marsha's Petting Zoo with sheep, goats and other friendly small animals.
--Armand Bayou Nature Center with crafts and games from the 1800s.
--In the military camps, a few lucky children will be chosen to stand with the cannon crew and pretend to load the cannons and will be presented with cannon soot to wear on their noses as a badge of honor.

[ Note: This item is more than seven years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ] [RM]
April 4, 2012
Public Input Sought on Proposed Devils River State Natural Area Public Use Plan
Five Meetings Set April 10-19
AUSTIN -- The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department will hold the first of five public meetings on April 10 in Houston to receive feedback on the Public Use Plan portion of the proposed General Management Plan for Devils River State Natural Area in Val Verde County. The meeting will be held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Houston Zoo's Brown Education Hall.
The plan will establish principles of guidance for developing and managing public access and recreational use, as well as natural and cultural resource management and protection, for both the older North Unit and new South Unit.
The two units will be managed as a "complex" by Superintendent Joe Ranzau. Together, the state natural area conserves nearly 38,000 acres and 10.8 miles of Devils River and Lake Amistad frontage. The complex includes the newly acquired 18,000-acre southern unit and the existing 20,000-acre state natural area 13 miles upriver. In addition to the TPWD's "state natural area" classification, both Val Verde County units are further protected by conservation easements that limit the amount of development that may occur on the properties.
The Devils River complex is classified as a state natural area instead of a state park. This designation emphasizes the conservation of the properties' unique cultural and natural resources. Educational and recreational opportunities are being planned that will preserve these special attributes, while at the same time allowing limited, resources-compatible public access and use of these ecologically fragile properties.
The earliest opportunity for general public access to the southern unit is projected currently to be late spring 2013, depending on staffing and budget issues.
Dates of the other upcoming meetings are: April 11 (Arlington), April 12 (Austin), April 16 (Del Rio) and April 19 (San Antonio). For meeting details or to post a comment, visit: http://tpwd.texas.gov/business/feedback/public_comment/.
To access the DRSNA General Management Plan executive summary, visit;

[ Note: This item is more than seven years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ]
[ Additional Contacts: Lydia Saldana, (512) 389-4575, lydia.saldana@tpwd.texas.gov ]
April 4, 2012
Businesses lend a helping hand to Texas state parks
Latest effort by Texas-based Whole Earth with in-store donation month
AUSTIN -- Realizing that Texas state parks are crown jewels and important economic engines of the Lone Star State, the business community is stepping up to help close a budget shortfall caused by last year's devastating wildfires, record drought and triple-digit heat.
This month Whole Earth Provision Company stores will host a checkout counter donation campaign benefiting state parks. All customers who make a donation will receive a Texas State Park Guide, and for every $20 donation customers will also receive a $5 state park gift card redeemable for park entrance fees and merchandise at state parks around the state.
Whole Earth Provision Co. www.wholeearthprovision.com is a travel, adventure and nature store with eight locations in Austin, Houston, Dallas and San Antonio.
"In our Texas State Parks we Texans are blessed with opportunities for an unrivaled range of outdoor adventures," said Jack Jones, company founder and lifelong Texas state park advocate. "These magical places belong to the citizens of Texas and are available for all of us to visit and experience."
Other businesses have also made donations or helped raise funds for Texas state parks, including REI, Toyota, La Quinta Inns and Suites, Geico, and Crestview RV. Thanks to these businesses, and the generous donations of private individuals and foundations, close to $1.4 million of the $4.6 million needed to close the gap has already been raised.
With spring bringing prime conditions to most of the state, TPWD is telling Texans that visiting state parks is the most important way people can help, since about 50 percent of the park system operating budget comes directly from visitor fees. There are 12 state parks within an hour's drive of Austin, nine within an hour's drive of San Antonio, eight parks less than an hour away from folks living in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex and seven about an hour away from those living in the Houston area.
State parks offer an affordable way to spend time with family and friends, since, children under 13 are admitted free, and there are senior citizen discounts for annual park passes.
"This month-long promotion at Whole Earth could generate significant dollars for our state parks in a time of need," said Brent Leisure, TPWD State Parks Director.
"We are very grateful for the fantastic support that the citizens and businesses of Texas continue to demonstrate on behalf of state parks."
For more information about visiting Texas State Parks, or to make a donation online, visit www.texasstateparks.org