From the snowy peaks of the Rubies and the wildflower meadows of Mt. Rose to the sand dunes of the Desert Refuge and red hoodoos of Gold Butte, we're celebrating 39 years of Keeping Nevada Wild! Check out this timeline of Friends' history and how many of our favorite protected places came to be.
Public lands stewardship is powered by the community. People from all walks of life give their time to maintain trails, install signs, and otherwise maintain Nevada’s wild spaces and trails. Such was the case on Saturday, February 25th when we hosted the community during their annual Wahoo volunteer appreciation day. Through rain and wind that has been a hallmark of this wild winter season about 25 volunteers and supporters met under the giant group picnic canopy at the Red Springs to celebrate the stewardship work accomplished this past year with sandwiches and hot soup plus a flurry of high-fives and wahoo’s.
Thank you to everyone that volunteered to keep southern Nevada’s wilderness wild in 2022!!
We couldn't host our annual Wingding Volunteer and Supporter Appreciation event without our wonderful donors - from cooking up barbeque to providing water bottles and gift cards for volunteer goodie bags, these people and businesses helped us celebrate our wild community at the 2022 Wingding!
Enjoy a virtual visit to the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge - one of the most remote and rugged places in the lower 48!
Cheers to our incredible volunteers, and another wonderful Wilderness Wingding in the books! We had a fantastic turnout with volunteers, donors, agency partners, and wild Nevada supporters all celebrating together with great food, drinks, and live music from the Sierra Sweethearts. In 2022 alone, 428 volunteers donated 5,664 hours of time on 48 stewardship projects for a total in-kind contribution of $218,000.
This year our special 2022 awards were presented to the following amazing people and businesses:
In honor of Latino Conservation Week, Stewardship Coordinator Meg Tait shares why she's passionate about protecting and caring for Nevada's wild places:
Having grown up in Argentina I learned to love the outdoors. Not that we were adventurous in the mountains or backpacking family like most people think outdoorsy people would be. But it was a different kind of outdoorsy. We would go to someone's Campo (farm) and ride horses for hours, eat dinner with the sunset, and sit around the fire under the stars. We would spend every minute at the beach that we could during the one week a year we would go to the coast. It was slowing down and sitting in the hammock just enjoying being outside in the breeze.
I brought this feeling with me when moving out to Nevada. I enjoy every creek I cross and try to jump in every lake I can, because water in the desert is something special. It’s enjoying the colors of wildflowers, and staying up way too late to witness the darkest skies I’ve ever seen.
At Friends, we love reusing and repurposing! Here's instructions to make cards and envelopes out of your old calendar by turning each picture-of-the-month into an envelope and then matting the index images and affixing them to the front of blank greeting cards.
Juan Palma: Largest conservation bill in Nevada’s history and would protect over two million acres of public lands
My life’s journey has taken me to places I never imagined. I was born in a rural village in the state of Guanajuato, México. At the age of eight, I began the backbreaking work of a migrant worker.
Riding in the back of a pickup truck early in the morning on the way to a job site, I remember looking out through the slats and seeing the Sierra Nevada Mountains. I wondered what it would be like to touch those beautiful mountains. Compared to the miserable migrant camps where I lived, I thought that the Sierra Nevada must be what heaven is like.
Against all odds, I went from being a migrant farm worker to graduating from high school, to working as a salesman, to getting my first job at the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) in 1984. This was where I found my life’s work: helping to manage America’s public lands. I served at the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for 30 years and ended my career in Utah as the BLM’s State Director.
I’m still passionate about raising awareness of the opportunities we have to protect and care for our public lands. I am particularly excited about a bill authored by Senator Catherine Cortez Masto and Representative Dina Titus: the Southern Nevada Economic Development and Conservation Act. This legislation is the largest conservation bill in Nevada’s history and would protect over two million acres of public lands.
Help us celebrate as Wilderness designation for the Desert National Wildlife Refuge is one step closer to reality!
The Southern Nevada Economic Development and Conservation Act - the largest conservation bill in the history of Nevada - was heard in the Senate on June 16! This landmark legislation was introduced in Congress by Senator Catherine Cortez Masto and Representative Dina Titus, and would designate 2 million conservation acres from #RedRockToTheRefuge, including more than 1.3 million acres of Wilderness in the Desert National Wildlife Refuge, keeping the Refuge safe from further military incursion. Protecting the refuge as Wilderness has been a high priority for Friends since its recommendation in 1971 - in fact, our Board Chair Dr. Roger Scholl testified in support 50 years ago.
Earth Day 2021!
Stewardship is back in full swing! In southern Nevada, we kicked things off with a busy Earth Week. Here’s what we were up to: