Purpose: The mission of BikeHouston is to promote safe bicycling and to improve the quality of life in the Houston area.
-secure equitable access to regional facilities, lands and roads
-educate the public about rights and responsibilities of bicyclists
-promote public awareness of the personal and community benefits of cycling
Meeting Time: Varies, see website.
Programs: Offer a free bike safety class to teach people how to ride bikes, how to ride safely in traffic, and how to drive safely.
Major Events: Houston Moonlight Bicycle Ramble, Bike Month and Bike to Work Day in May; Effective Cycling (adult safety/skills) classes.
Volunteer Opportunities: Volunteers are welcome to join any aspect of the organization, especially the Moonlight Bicycle Ramble and other rides.
Joe Cutrufo. Executive Director
Outdoor Nature Club
Purpose: To cooperate in the enjoyment and study of nature; to further conservation of natural resources and foster interest in them, and to work toward the establishment and maintenance of natural sanctuaries and preserves.
Meetings: Second Thursday, 7:30 p.m.,
Sept.- May at Bayland Community Center, 6400 Bissonnet.
Botany/Entomology has the materials and expertise to share the wonders of plants and insects. Group members study native plants and insects of east Texas and the upper Texas coast.
ONC/Ornithology Group members are interested in birds. Some members focus on bird identification and listing, some enjoy studying bird behavior and habitat, some just enjoy watching birds.
Major Events: Monthly field trip; monthly subgroup meetings and field trips. Monthly open house with camping at the 650-acre Little Thicket Nature Sanctuary near Evergreen, Texas.
Children’s Activities: Birding field trips.
Publications: Newsletter, Nature Notes; ornithology group newsletter, The Spoonbill; yearbook with activity calendar.
Nina Rach, President
Connie Blakely, Secretary-Treasurer
Friends of Mandell Park
Purpose: The Friends of Mandell Park, a nonprofit Texas Corporation, was formed in August 2004 to improve, protect and assist in the maintenance of the City of Houston’s Mandell Park.
Publications: Newsletter, Informational Brochure
Programs: Organic Gardening in Meredith Gardens, Outdoor Movies, Exhibition Prairie. Speakers are also available. Field trips of the park for your school group.
Regular Meetings: Gardeners meet Wednesdays and Saturdays at 9:00 a.m. Swap-A-Toy and stories for children on Saturdays at 10:00 a.m.
Volunteer Opportunities: Regular opportunities for Gardening; Maintenance; Communications; Fund Raising. Contact Fomandellpark@aol.com for details.
Major Events: Annual Spring Event
Children’s Activities: Visits to Meredith Gardens, Outdoor Play Area.
Holly Smith, President
Susan Allen-Bryan, Meredith Gardens Coordinator
Maryann Jones, Secretary
Houston Zoo Wildlife Conservation Program
Purpose: Our mission is to make the Houston Zoo a leader in conservation as it relates to the survival of threatened wildlife, wise use of natural resources, and the appreciation of our natural world by zoo visitors.
Publications: Members quarterly Wildlife Magazine.
Major Events: Conservation Gala, Call of the Wild Speakers Series, Earth Day, Feast with the Beasts, Zoobilee, Zoo Boo, Spotlight on Species Weekends.
Children’s Activities: Educational programming, Wild Winks, Summer and Winter Camps, Zoomobile Outreach Programs.
Volunteer Opportunities: Houston Zoo Volunteer Programs for individuals and corporations: email@example.com or (713) 533-6549.
Vice President of Conservation and Education
Conservation Programs Manager
Director of Public Relations
Houston-Galveston Area Council
Purpose: The Houston-Galveston Area Council is a region-wide voluntary association of local governments in the 13-county Gulf Coast Planning region of Texas. H-GAC’s mission is to serve as the instrument of local government cooperation, promoting the region’s orderly development and the safety and welfare of its citizens. Key governmental services include transportation planning, disaster resiliency, cooperative purchasing, homeland security, workforce development, air and water quality planning, forecasting, and mapping.
Programs: H-GAC engages in a variety of collaborative environmental planning efforts including watershed protection, solid waste management and air quality for sustainable development. It is also actively involved in education and public awareness programs, including Commute Solutions and NuRide, the Clean Waters Initiative, Regional Recycling Roundtable.
Volunteer Opportunities: H-GAC offers year-round volunteer opportunities through our Texas Stream Team volunteer water monitoring program, as well as at a one-day Trash Bash waterway cleanup event. For more information on opportunities, visit http://www.h-gac.com/go/getinvolved.
Jeff Taebel, Director of Community and Environmental Planning
Kathy Janhsen, Principal Program Coordinator
Houston Parks Board
Purpose: The Houston Parks Board creates, improves, protects and advocates for parks for everyone. HPB is driven by the vision of thriving parks and communities for everyone forever.Programs: Parkland and greenspace acquisition; park capital improvement projects; collaboration with other green groups; Neighborhood Partnership Program; 50/50 Park Partners Challenge; Volunteer Program.…More Details
Purpose: The Houston Parks Board creates, improves, protects and advocates for parks for everyone. HPB is driven by the vision of thriving parks and communities for everyone forever.
Programs: Parkland and greenspace acquisition; park capital improvement projects; collaboration with other green groups; Neighborhood Partnership Program; 50/50 Park Partners Challenge; Volunteer Program.
Bayou Greenways 2020: HPB, in partnership with the City of Houston and Houston Parks and Recreation Department, and in coordination with Harris County Flood Control District, is currently leading the transformational $220 million project to complete a 150-mile network of connected parks and trails along Houston’s major waterways.
Beyond the Bayous: Beyond the Bayous is the shared vision of HPB and its cross-sector partners for expanding Greater Houston’s public realm to improve greenspace equity and connectivity between parks, homes and jobs; increase public access to parks; and enhance the environmental health of communities.
Speakers Bureau: Contact Executive Director. https://houstonparksboard.org/get-involved/request-a-speaker
Publications: All annual reports are published on HPB’s website. To view the reports as well as videos about HPB’s impact, click here.
Beth White, President and CEO firstname.lastname@example.org
Lisa Kasianowitz, Outreach Manager email@example.com
General Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Trust for Public Land
Purpose: The Trust for Public Land conserves land for people to enjoy as parks, gardens and other natural places, ensuring livable communities for generations to come.
Programs: Conservation Vision (“Greenprints”); Conservation Finance (public funding); Conservation Transactions (easement and fee acquisitions); Texas Water Protection and Parks Intiative; ParkScore; Parks for People. TPL is active in the Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston/Galveston and Austin/San Antonio regions.
Major Events: Earth Day Dallas.
Publications: Land & People, a semi-annual national magazine; The Trust for Public Land – Texas, a state newsletter; TPL Near You, an electronic newsletter.
Robert Kent, State Director
Mike Lange, Senior Project Manager, Texas Coast
Marlon P. Connley, Houston Program Manager
Tel: (832) 627-7688
Armand Bayou Nature Center
Purpose: To preserve 2,500 acres of vanishing coastal prairie, hardwood forest and bayou wilderness habitat and wildlife refuge; to give opportunities to experience and understand the remaining natural ecosystem; to reconnect people with nature.
Programs: Year–round adult, child, and family programs including Third Sundays in Nature Series, FREE to the public; Eco-Exploration pontoon boat and canoe trips; guided day and night hikes; Eco-Camp summer and holiday camps; Great Texas Birding Trail Site 81; Teachers can receive SBEC credit for classes. Speakers are available to come speak to your classroom or group, contact website or call for booking.
Major Events: Apr. – World Migratory Bird Day; May – Fundraising Dinner and Auction; Oct. – Creepy Crawlers; Nov. – Martyn Farm Harvest Festival; Dec. – Christmas Bird Count
Children’s Activities: Critter Corner, Connections and Bayou Studies classes; naturalist lead and self-guided school field trips; scout programs;
Volunteer Opportunities: Prairie Friday Team, Stewardship Saturday Team, Trail Guides and History Interpreters, Environmental Education Docents, Nature Center Maintenance Crew, Teen Volunteer Corps, BSA Venturing Crew, seasonal prairie and bayou marsh restoration.
Publications: Along the Bayou, Bayou Foliage
Tim Pylate: Executive Director
Phone: (281) 474-2551
Phone: 713 274 2667
Phone: 713 274 2672
Big Thicket Association
Purpose: The Big Thicket Association’s mission is to preserve, protect, and promote the Big Thicket region, its natural resources and cultural history, for enjoyment and well-being of present and future generations through advocacy, education, and research.
Major Programs: Neches River Adventures – a three tiered program that conducts (Tier 1) outdoor classes, (Tier 2) public and (Tier 3) private eco-history tours aboard the Ivory Bill and on the Neches River. The project’s main focus is providing a free environmental education program to area schools. We give public tours every Saturday from March until November (fees apply). We are also available for Private Charters year around. All bookings are per registration by phone or online. Field Research Station – Available for groups, school, zoos, etc.…organizations that are interested outdoor activities or volunteering in the Big Thicket. Thicket of Diversity – Devoted to scientific research in the Big Thicket Region. Grants are available to researchers through the Thicket of Diversity.
Wendy J. Ledbetter., Executive Director
Kathy Smartt, Vice President
John Stafford, President
Memorial Park Conservancy
Purpose: To preserve, restore, and enhance Memorial Park for the enjoyment of all Houstonians, today and tomorrow.
Major Events: “4 the Park” Fun Run, Golf Tournament, Green Gala.
Volunteer Opportunities: Corporate, school group and individuals; ongoing Bridge Club, trail maintenance, conservation and administrative.
Speakers Bureau: Yes.
Publications: Happenings in the Park.
Shellye Arnold, President & CEO
Carolyn White, Conservation Director
Gulf Coast Bird Observatory, Inc.
Purpose: To protect birds and their habitats around the Gulf of Mexico.
Programs: Land protection, Site Partner Network, Research, Educational Outreach, Tropical Forest Forever Fund. Field Trips are available for your school group. Call office for booking information. Coastal Wildbird Trunk – educational resources for primary and secondary age students
Major Events: Birdies for the Birds, Xtreme Hummingbird Xtravaganza, Smith Point Hawk Watch, Monthly Bird Banding, Quintana Spring Fling.
Volunteer Opportunities: Field research, trail maintenance, invasive species eradication, gardening, general workdays, administrative, advocacy, events, fundraising.
Speaker’s Bureau: Yes, call office.
Publications: Gulf Coastal Prairie Bird Conservation Plan, Project Prairie Birds: A Citizen Science Project for Wintering Grassland Birds, bi-annual newsletter, monthly newsletter, monthly e-news, online blog.
Martin Hagne, Executive Director
Tricia Patton, Office Manager
Surfrider Foundation – Texas Chapter
Purpose: To preserve and protect the Texas coast and its recreational resources. To defend the Texas Open Beaches Act. Our issues are water quality, beach access, erosion, and coastal development. Our goal is to stand on the beach 30 years from now and be able to say, “We made the right decisions.” We were founded in 1999.
Meetings: 3rd Tuesday of the month in Houston.
Programs: Respect the Beach – education program for schools; Blue Water Task Force – beach water testing; Rise Above Plastics – reduce plastic pollution; Ocean Friendly Gardens – reduce urban runoff.
Children’s Activities: Science and education projects, beach activities, surf lessons.
Volunteer Opportunities: Beach cleanups, public education programs, water testing, fundraising, government relations, public relations, and advertising.
Publications: “Making Waves” – national publication (monthly publication also available on the web) Beachapedia – internet resource beachapedia.org/Main_P
Ellis Pickett, Chairman
Pamela Walters, Secretary
Media/Press/Speakers Bureau, Ellis Pickett
Houston Canoe Club
Purpose: Established in 1964, the Houston Canoe Club’s members are interested in all types of paddlesport from canoeing to kayaking, quietwater, whitewater, touring and racing. We do it all and have fun doing it. Canoe safety presentations are available for school groups.
Meeting Time: 7 p.m. on the second Wednesday of each month at the Bayland Community Center, 6400 Bissonnet Street, Houston, TX 77074.
Volunteer Opportunities: Waterway clean-ups, habitat restoration, boating race safety/judging, water quality issues.
Publications: Monthly newsletter, The Waterline.
Bob Naeger, Commodore
Houston Parks and Recreation Department
Purpose: To enhance the quality of urban life by providing safe, well-maintained parks and offering affordable programs for the community.
Jan – Arbor Day; Youth Tennis classes begin
Feb – Salt Grass Trail Ride; Adult sports leagues begin
Mar – Tour de Houston, Metal & Muscle Expo; Lake Houston Wilderness
Apr – Houston Children’s Festival, Japan Festival, Houston International Festival
May – Challenge Day, Summer Pool Opening
June – Summer Food Program begins, Golf Tourn; Hershey Track & Field Meet
Jul – Freedom Over Texas; Houston Pops July 4th Celebration
Oct – Asian-American Festival; Wildflower seed planting
Nov – Via Colori
Dec – Heritage Society Candlelight Tour, Holiday Tree Lighting
Year round – Lake Houston Park Nature Center events
School year – After School Enrichment Program
Volunteer Opportunities: Oneika McCarthy
(832) 395-7030 email@example.com
Publications: Activities Catalog – Winter/Spring Issue Dec 1, Summer Issue
Apr 1, and Fall Issue Aug 1.
Member: Commission for Accreditation of Park & Recreation Agencies.
Hermann Park Conservancy
Purpose:Founded in 1992, Hermann Park Conservancy is a nonprofit citizens’ organization dedicated to the stewardship and improvement of Hermann Park, one of Houston’s largest and most loved urban parks, where more than six million visitors make memories each year.
Beyond raising funds to improve and maintain the Park, the Conservancy oversees strategic planning for Hermann Park’s future as well as programs focused on visitor services, conservation and stewardship, tree care, and operations and maintenance of the McGovern Centennial Gardens. For more information on the Conservancy, visit hermannpark.org.
Programs: Corporate sponsorship programs, volunteer programs and community events.
Major Events: Hermann Park Conservancy Kite Festival (held each March), Part to Port Bike Ride, Run in the Park, Evening in the Park Gala, Hats in the Park Luncheon, and Urban Green young professionals events.
Children’s Activities: Hermann Park Rail Road, Pedal boat rides, family volunteer opportunities, Hermann Park Conservancy Kite Festival (held each March), Children’s Story Hour (held every Friday in the McGovern Centennial Gardens’ Family Garden).
Volunteer Opportunities: Opportunities are available for individuals, corporations, civic associations, school groups, and families. They range from administrative duties and event preparation to weeding and tree planting. Contact Diane Kerr, for more information.
Speakers Bureau: Contact Doreen Stoller.
Publications: Parkside newsletter, Hermann Park Conservancy e-news.
Doreen Stoller, President
(713)-524-5876 ext. 331
University of Houston: Office of Sustainability
Purpose: The University of Houston Office of Sustainability serves as the hub for campus sustainability efforts. Engaging the campus and community, the office fosters collaboration and educates individuals about social, economic and environmental factors that impact today’s society and generations to come. On-campus sustainability initiatives include academic programs and research, educational events, the campus community garden, single-stream recycling, water bottle refill stations, renewable energy use, sustainable transportation, green building and more.
Programs: Sustainability Task Force, Sustainability Meetups, Student Sustainability Team and Campus Community Garden
Events: Cleanup Day, Sustainability Fest, Bike to UH Day, Electronics Recycling Drive, RecycleMania and Earth Week,
Volunteer opportunities: Gardening, Campus and community events, Cleanup events.
Michael Mendoza, Sustainability Program Manager
Melissa Halstead, Sustainability Coordinator
Sheldon State Park and Envir. Learning Center
Purpose: Sheldon Lake State Park & Environmental Learning Center is a 2,800-acre outdoor education and recreation facility located in northeast Harris County. It offers year round adult and family programs and activities as well as field trip opportunities for students of all ages. Beginning in 2003, the park is became an important restoration site for tall grass prairie. The park is open to the public daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The lake, its banks, and levees are open from sunrise to sunset.
Programs: The park offers a variety of nature and ecology programs to organized groups on a reservation basis. Park staff and volunteers provide programs on nature/ecology, nature walks, catch-and-release fishing in two stocked ponds (fishing poles provided), pond ecology, native plant gardening, hunter education, composting and recycling. Programs range in time from one to two hours each.
Events: For a complete listing of the park’s daily events, please visit https://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/sheldon-lake/park_events
Activities: Sheldon Lake is open every day to public fishing with appropriate licenses. Birding, wildlife/nature study, hiking, and fishing for children. The park includes a 0.5-mile self-guided nature trail that passes 28 naturalized ponds that contain alligators and other wildlife. (Binoculars are recommended for best viewing.) Free catch-and-release family fishing is permitted for children accompanied by adults, in the two fishing ponds. Alternative energy technologies and green building techniques (photovoltaic, solar hot water, wind turbine and ground coupled-geothermal) are demonstrated at the Pond Center. A wildscape demonstration garden shows techniques for using native plants and wildflowers to attract birds, butterflies and other wildlife to your backyard.
Volunteer Opportunities: For information on volunteer opportunities at Sheldon Lake, contact the park at (281) 456-2800
Houston Audubon Society
Purpose: To advance the conservation of birds and positively impact their supporting environments. Founded in 1969.
Meetings: with speakers are held the second Thursday of alternate school months: Sept, Nov, Jan, March, & May at United Way Center at 50 Waugh Drive. See website for details. Houston Audubon Nature Photography Association (HANPA) meetings: Third Wednesdays of each month, Sept-May, 7 p.m., HAS headquarters.
Programs: Live bird outreach programs for schools, civic groups, libraries; field trips; guided tours of the Edith L. Moore Bird Sanctuary; birding classes. Children’s Activities: Community Outreach Programs, Bayou Buddies, Titmouse Club, Summer Camp, Family Nature Explore Club. Girl Scout badge programs and Girl/Boy Scout service projects.
Major Events: Spring Migration at High Island sanctuaries; Birdathon (Mar-Apr.); Annual gala “Avian Affair”; Christmas Bird Counts; Bird Week (end of Sept.)
Volunteer Opportunities: Gardening, trail guides, field research, trail crew, clerical, advocacy, events, photography, video editing, education, data entry, event support, translating, Young Professionals Advisory Council.
Speakers Bureau: Contact Mary Anne Weber firstname.lastname@example.org
Houston Audubon Society includes Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Matagorda, Montgomery, Waller, Washington and Wharton counties.
Helen E. Drummond, Executive Director
713-932-1639 ext. 107
Rachel Schipul, Operations Manager
713-932-1639 ext. 104
Lauren Miheli, Volunteer Coordinator
713-932-1639 ext. 102
Sierra Club – Hou. Regional Group
Purpose: To explore, enjoy, and protect the wild places of the earth; to practice and promote the responsible use of the earth’s ecosystems and resources; to educate and enlist humanity to protect and restore the quality of the natural and human environment; and to use all lawful means to carry out these objectives.
Meetings: Second Thurs., 7:30 p.m., St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, 1805 West Alabama at Woodhead. OPEN TO PUBLIC.
Major Events: Trips, workshops, outings, and classes; Yard Sale, spring; Annual Auction, at December meeting.
Recreational Outings: Open to members and non-members. See listing on website.
Children’s Activities: Inner City Outings program. Contact Lorraine Gibson at email@example.com.
Volunteer Opportunities: Issues include water & air quality, watershed, sustainability, energy, forestry, and parks & wildlife; Political Committee endorsements; legislative issues and letter writing; trail maintenance on Lone Star Hiking Trail; training for leading outings.
Publications: Bayou Banner, monthly (call for free copy or print PDF version from website).
Brandt Mannchen, Executive Committee Chair
Evelyn L. Merz, Conservation Chair
Carol Woronow, Bayou Banner and Newsletter Editor,
Melanie Oldham, Air Quality
Brandt Mannchen, Forestry and Big Thicket
Galveston Bay Foundation
Purpose: To preserve, protect, and enhance the natural resources of the Galveston Bay estuarine system and its tributaries for present users and for posterity. Galveston Bay Foundation’s balanced programs in advocacy, conservation, education, and research strive to ensure that Galveston Bay remains a beautiful and productive place for generations to come.
Programs: Educational presentations; community events; habitat restoration and conservation; trash cleanups; wetland permit review, responding to proposed actions in the bay area. Speakers are available for presentations to your classroom, contact for booking.
Major Events: Marsh Mania; Bay Day; Bike Around the Bay; GBF Luncheon; Trash Bash; Redfish Raft-Up, Rain Barrel Workshops.
Children’s Programs: Get Hip to Habitat; Bay Day; Bay Ambassadors; Children’s Art Calendar.
Volunteer Opportunities: The success of GBF can be directly attributed to the support we received from volunteers. Visit GBF’s website to find out more about our ongoing volunteer opportunities.
Publications: GBF Gazette, GBF E-News, Galveston Bay Drive & Discover Guide, Children’s Art Calendar.
Bob Stokes, President
(281) 332-3381 ex-211
Nicole Scanlin, Director of Development
(281) 332-3381 ex-213
Database and Administrative support
The CEC has a searchable, web-based version of the Environmental Resource Guide. You may also download older versions of the printed guide below.
Archived Resource Guides