Get excited for our Texas Master Naturalist 2023 Annual Meeting – to be held Thursday October 12 through Sunday October 15th this year at the southernmost point of Texas’ South Plains ecoregion, surrounded by mesquite and prickly pear brush country in McAllen, Texas.
The Lower Rio Grande Valley is famous for its diversity of birds, butterflies, and endangered species like Ocelots, Texas tortoises, sabal palms, and piping plovers that call the region home. McAllen offers some of the best birding and nature exploration opportunities in Texas, with its sunny subtropical climate and prime location along the Central Flyway. For our 24th Annual Meeting, we are excited to gather at the McAllen Convention Center, which sits between multiple nature centers and wildlife refuges along the Rio Grande Valley. McAllen also offers a unique opportunity this year as a prime location to view an annular solar eclipse!
The Texas Master Naturalist Annual Meeting provides an opportunity for the Texas Master Naturalist volunteers from around the state to gather, participate in hands-on educational seminars, and receive all their Advanced Training requirements for the year in one weekend. It’s also an opportunity for program participants and supporters to network, share new ideas, and to learn from chapters in different regions of the state.
The Texas Master Naturalist Program is sponsored statewide by the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department and the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. The programs mission is to develop a corps of well-informed volunteers to provide education, outreach, and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within their communities for the State of Texas.
The program currently supports 15,000+ volunteers in 48 local chapters across the state. TMN volunteers provide over 400,000 hours of annually. Many communities and organizations rely on these volunteers for implementing youth education programs; for operating parks, nature centers, and natural areas; and for providing leadership in local natural resource conservation efforts. Texas Master Naturalist volunteers are required to receive 40 hours of basic training, obtain a minimum of 8 hours of advanced training and perform 40 hours of volunteer service prior to being certified as a Texas Master Naturalist volunteer. To keep their certification current each year, TMN’s are required to obtain an additional 8 hours of advanced training and provide 40 hours of volunteer service annually. For more information visit our statewide website: http://www.txmn.org
Any additional questions about the Texas Master Naturalist 2023 Annual Meeting or the Program in general can be directed to Michelle Haggerty (email@example.com) or Mary Pearl Meuth (firstname.lastname@example.org).