What We Do
The Tennessee State Parks Conservancy, a 501(c)3 nonprofit partner of the Tennessee State Parks system, is dedicated to making Tennessee State Parks better by raising funds from corporations, foundations and individuals for educational programs, health initiatives and special park projects.
Supporting the TSPC allows businesses, foundations and individuals to demonstrate their commitment to protecting Tennessee’s 56 beautiful state parks for people to enjoy for years to come. Some of the types of programs and projects the organization helps fund are:
Based on a successful program by the National Park Foundation, which supports the National Park Service, the TSPC Field Trip Program gives children from diverse backgrounds an opportunity to get out of the classroom and learn about wildlife, the environment and Tennessee history through an immersive, hands-on experience opportunity at a Tennessee State Park.
Junior Ranger Camp Sponsorships
This program offers children a summer camp experience that provides opportunities for exploring and learning about the natural world through an array of fun and creative activities at a state park. Sponsorships allow students to attend who might not otherwise be able to due to financial restrictions.
Healthy Parks, Healthy Person Program
An initiative of Henry Horton State Park, funded in part by the Tennessee Department of Health, Healthy Parks Healthy Person is a community-based program that encourages physical activity in city, state and national parks across Tennessee through physician prescriptions and patient incentives.
Playgrounds provide a fun and healthy environment for kids to learn, experiment and interact with one another. The TSPC will prioritizes accessible playgrounds, which provide special equipment for kids of all abilities.
Fitness trails provide exercise equipment installed along a trail so park users can get a complete workout outside of a gym environment.
Special Park Projects
Story Book Trails
Tennessee State Parks Storybook Trails tell a nature-themed story with signs placed at a child’s height on a short trail at a park. In addition to promoting literacy, and parental engagement, Storybook Trails encourage families to connect with nature and engage in a healthy, outdoor activity.
Thanks to the Governor’s Books from Birth Foundation, whose mission is to promote early childhood literacy in Tennessee’s birth to age 5 population, Tennessee State Parks has 6 Storybook Trails that feature Dolly Parton's Imagination Library books. Imagination Library Storybook Trails can be found at Cumberland Mountain State Park, Edgar Evins State Park, Henry Horton State Park (Opening 10/13), Long Hunter State Park, Montgomery Bell State Park (Opening 10/27) and Pickett State Park (Opening 11/3).
Funding for museum exhibits allows parks to create an interactive experience for visitors to learn about local history, nature or the unique aspects of a park.
Preservation of Natural Resources
The Tennessee State Parks Conservancy is dedicated to projects and programs that protect the natural resources found in Tennessee State Parks and Natural Areas, which includes the protection of rare and endangered plants and the eradication of exotic, invasive species.