About our website

Big Bend Conservancy’s mission is to promote, protect and raise funds for Big Bend National Park and the Rio Grande Wild and Scenic River.

By 1995, Lori Palmer and her husband Russ Jewert had been visiting Big Bend National Park for over 20 years. Having heard of other Friends groups, they decided to join one for Big Bend; however, they discovered that no such group existed. They and other Park enthusiasts put the wheels in motion to start a group, and in 1997 a specially designed license plate was created to help raise funds.

Since then, thousands of Texans have supported the Park through their purchase of both car and motorcycle license plates. In addition, the Conservancy has raised funds for the park through grants, individual gifts and matching gifts. To date, Big Bend Conservancy has raised over $3.2 million for the park, including over $600,000 in license plate monies.

Big Bend Conservancy works directly with Big Bend National Park and Rio Grande Wild and Scenic River management to determine projects and programs that need our support. We jointly determine the types of projects that are brought to the board and look into the future to see what may be needed at a later time. Once a project is selected we set a plan for raising the funds needed to make the project come to life.

The Conservancy also participates in special events, research projects, legislative efforts and other special opportunities to promote the Park and advance the cause of national park funding.

To date, the Conservancy has provided over $3.2 million to Big Bend National Park and the Rio Grande Wild and Scenic River. Our current projects include raising the final funds for the Fossil Discovery Exhibit, paying for repairs to the Homer Wilson Ranch home and raising funds for new exhibits at the Rio Grande Village Visitor Center.

The Big Bend Conservancy funds a wide variety of projects and programs. The Conservancy concentrates its efforts on improving the visitor experience by enhancing interpretation, adding new exhibits and providing needed equipment for Park staff to better communicate with visitors. The Conservancy also works to restore habitat, preserve historic buildings, improve the relationship with the community in Boquillas, Mexico and more.

Past projects have included the Visitor Orientation Film ($235,000), the Teacher Ranger Teacher program ($8,000) and the Boquillas Crossing Station ($60,000).

To date, the Conservancy has provided over $3.2 million to Big Bend National Park and the Rio Grande Wild and Scenic River. Our current projects include raising the final funds for the Fossil Discovery Exhibit, paying for repairs to the Homer Wilson Ranch home and raising funds for new exhibits at the Rio Grande Village Visitor Center.

Members are the lifeblood of the Conservancy. Your membership helps us complete projects, put on special events and connect with Park supporters across the nation. Members make our mission happen!

Become a Member here.

In addition to membership, Texas residents can support us by purchasing the Big Bend license plate. Thousands of Texans have purchased the plate throughout the years, and in doing so have provided the Park with over sixty different projects, resources and staff that would not otherwise have been available to the Park and its visitors. Click here to purchase your Big Bend license plate.

Projects

Rio Grande Village Wetlands Restoration

For five years, the Conservancy has worked with the Park to restore over 55 acres of wetlands in the Rio Grande Village area of the Park.  This project is restoring Rio Grande riparian bird habitat to a disturbed site near the

Photos provided by Mike Marvins

Fossil Discovery Exhibit

The Fossil Discovery Exhibit is coming soon!  Debuting September 24, 2016 this new exhibit will feature the Park's 120 million years of paleontologic history. Big Bend National Park has one of the richest collections of fossils

Photos provided by Lake Flato Architects

Support Us

 

Memorials & Honoraria

Memorials & Honoraria

Remember your loved ones with a gift in their memory or honor. These gifts support our mission for both Park units.

Planned Giving

Planned Giving

Provide a legacy for future generations and improve a place of distinction through planned giving.

Membership

Membership

Starting at $50/year, memberships help the Conservancy with funds to support our mission.

License Plates

License Plates

Over $600,000 has been provided to the Park by license plate holders.