JACKIE MATTICE – 2008 Class – Roadrunners
What was your 1st. Project and what did you do? As a retired science teacher I knew I wanted to join or start a program for school children. Jane Little and Cara Wernli had started the 3rd grade birding program at the Patsy Glenn Refuge which I joined. Eventually we added other grades to visit other local natural sites with the goal of exposing Wimberley students to the natural areas in our community. We take high school students on the Cypress Creek Nature Trail, work with 2nd graders at their outdoor education facility to promote plant education, hold a water fair for the 5th graders at Jacob's Well Elementary, take middle school students on a field trip to Blue Hole and 3rd graders to Patsy Glenn Refuge for a birding program.
What is your favorite Volunteer Activity & why? Wimberley Outdoor Educators continues to be my favorite HCMN activity. I also enjoy my outreach writing for the Wimberley View in conjunction with Keep Wimberley Beautiful. The weekly column (I write every other week) forces me to learn more about the local environment, which is why I became a Master Naturalist and continue to value the program.
Can you share a story or funny memory from your early days with HCMN? One endearing story took place at Blue Hole as the students were returning to the bus. One middle school young man said to his friend, " I had no idea there was so much nature at Blue Hole." Mission accomplished!
JANE DUNHAM - 2010 CLASS Prickly Pears
What was your 1st. Project and what did you do? I assisted the Education Director for Jacob’s Well with many activities and student group visits at the well.
What is your favorite Volunteer Activity & why? I am passionate about water conservation and am always happy to find a way to educate people about the need for it.
What does the HCMN 20th Anniversary mean to You? It means we have established a strong chapter with lots of enthusiastic volunteers who sustain it.
CONSTANCE QUIGLEY – 2019 Class – Class Name TBD
What was your 1st. Project and what did you do? My first project was acting as docent/nature center guide at Jacobs Well Natural Area. It's a lot of fun and there is some interaction with the public, so it's an opportunity to educate and contribute to visitors' awareness of the importance of our aquifer and the restoration of our wild areas in Texas.
What is your favorite Volunteer Activity & why? I really love the vegetation surveys at Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. It's so much fun to get out in the field and observe tiny plants emerging in the spring and fall. It's a fabulous long-term project (over 20 years now) studying the effects of fire on prairie recovery and species diversity. I enjoy spending the time with other plant aficionados and learning how to identify the enormous quantity of native (and invasive) plants that grow in Central Texas.
Can you share a story or funny memory from your early days with HCMN? Well, I'm not even an "official" master naturalist yet. This is my training year. I think most of the entertainment so far involves getting lost trying to find projects using GPS and discovering how very large Hays County really is when you have to drive to various parts of it for projects or training. Oh, and the mosquitoes! And the joys of finding your way around low-water crossings that are closed due to flooding. Yes - all of that and more - but it's so worth it! I love HCMN - it's like finding long-lost family who don't think I'm crazy for having a jungle around my house!
What does the HCMN 20th Anniversary mean to You? The 20th anniversary is a special milestone for any organization. I'm so impressed that HCMN has grown so much and contributed so much to Hays County. I'm excited to be a part of this great organization and hope to spend many years participating, sharing, educating, and most importantly learning about animals, plants, water, land use, geology, etc. Twenty years is just a drop in the bucket when it comes to all the subjects we need to study!
TOM JONES – 2017 Class – NIGHTHAWKS
What was your 1st. Project and what did you do? Chaetura Canyon Sanctuary, Travis Co. The work involved tail maintenance.
What is your favorite Volunteer Activity & why? Being a Guide at Westcave Preserve.The biggest joy is just being outdoors. It is a new experience every time even though I give tours on the same trail many times. Guiding is an interactive experience with individuals and groups that came to see and learn about a new place.
Can you share a story or funny memory from your early days with the Chapter? I am a relative newbie with the Chapter, so no early days. Working with the Newsletter, I have had the opportunity to discover what a unique and wonderful Chapter we have in Hays County. So many talented people willing to work hard to educate and improve the natural resources.
What does the HCMN 20th Anniversary mean to You? For 20 years HCMN have invested thousands of hours making a difference to the communities and the Hill Country. I cannot imagine what it would look like if this organization was never formed.
WINIFRED SIMON - 2000 Class - I would love to help out here but my memory of our training is very sketchy. We graduated in 2000 but I don’t even remember our class name or too many other details. Thank goodness I do remember some of what we learned.
DICK McBRIDE – 2010 Class - PRICKLY PEARS
The name was my suggestion because we were sort of a “prickly” group. It passed 17 -16 so obviously wasn’t everyone’s favorite.
What was your 1st. Project and what did you do? My first project was working trails with the San Marcos Greenbelt Alliance. I moved to San Marcos not knowing anyone so I thought the trail crew might be a good start. There were a couple of MNs on the crew which sparked my interest in the program. I had to wait a year because the class was full when I applied in 2009.
What is your favorite Volunteer Activity & why? I don’t have a favorite project—really. I have not met a project I don’t like and that’s the reason I work so many of them. I’d work more if there was more time. I have a number of regular projects each week with a couple of regular Saturdays and pop-up projects often. I have a big advantage in being single so I don’t have many family obligations. Almost all of my time is my own.
Can you share a story or funny memory from your early days with the Chapter? Although there is always humor when working and especially in the training classes I can’t come up with much right now. I am known for my horrible puns. One year they were discussing the Graduation Gala in a training class—I was in back shooting the video. The food people said we were going to have Thai food that year. —I piped in from the back that the reason for that was that half of the host committee wanted chicken while the other half wanted bar-B Q—hence it was a Thai—yea, bad
What does the HCMN 20th Anniversary mean to You? The 20th Anniversary is important to me in that it represents the success of the MN concept and its staying power. It is a moment to reflect upon what we’ve accomplished and what’s ahead.