The City of Plano's Sustainability & Environmental Education Division will unveil its new Nature Explore Trail at its Wonders of Water (WOW!) family fun event on Saturday, Sept. 22.
Located adjacent to a creek on the Environmental Education Center grounds, the Nature Explore Trail is an educational pathway that uses interactive signage to teach visitors about Plano's creeks, their inhabitants and ways that residents of all ages can care for them. The trail was funded through a Texas Parks & Wildlife Conservation License Plate grant.
The trail's boardwalk is made of TREX, a composite decking material made from recycled wood and plastic film. The use of this recycled material illustrates that watershed protection, including the removal of plastic pollution from waterways, can be a closed-loop, beneficial practice.
In addition, the trail features a metal art installation of "Herbie" the blue heron. Blue herons are large wading birds that are common in Plano's creeks, and their survival is dependent on the health of their habitat. "Herbie" was designed to visibly house plastic debris in his abdomen to demonstrate the impact of litter on wildlife and the environment.
WOW!, a free family fun event, will officially welcome the public to the Nature Explore Trail. Along with a blue ribbon cutting ceremony, attendees will enjoy a morning of engaging activities geared toward water quality education and watershed protection. WOW! attendees will also have the opportunity to complete the art installation by placing plastic debris in "Herbie's" abdomen.