Social and Prairie Work, German Students and Hiking

Valentines weekend featured no fewer than three unique, SMGA-led hikes at the newly improved Spring Lake Preserve.
Dr. Christine Norton of the TX State School of Social Work organized a Friday hike with visiting lecturer Jarid Manos. Manos is a leader in connecting troubled people with abused prairies as a way for both to find health and resilience. His successful work is being developed further through his organization the Great Plains Restoration Project so that it can be modeled and replicated. His recent popular book, Ghetto Plainsman, offers a deeply personal revelation by Manos that led him from the violence of the ghetto to an understanding of the violence committed in the prairies of our nation. You can learn more about his impressive work at and
We had a great time Saturday morning as part of our regular Saturday hike series. The bird migration has begun, buds on some trees are just beginning to peek and the mild weather made for a very refreshing jaunt up and over the mountain. Good people and conversation made for a very pleasant morning.
Sunday afternoon we hooked up with students from Germany, who were hosted by the English Department as organized by Dan Lochman, Phd. Again the weather was near perfect and the students were pleased to slough off layers of clothing and soak up sun--hard to find in Germany this time of year. The students spoke English quite well and we had interesting discussions about the natural history of Spring Lake Preserve. They are part of an exchange program that will find Texas State Students headed to Germany later this summer.