Brazos Bend State Park Volunteer Gift Shop and Nature Center.
This little Gift Shop, located inside the Nature Center, packs a lot of essentials you might need such as pain relief, sun screen, and cold beverages as well as interesting and fun items. They sell walking sticks, cool T-shirts, field guides, numerous activity books and games, and more. For several years they have been selling our first book Think You Know Animals? in their Gift Shop – long before we formed a publishing business.
The Nature Center has great exhibits including resident wildlife and pond life aquariums. Come see a baby alligator up close. Knowledgeable volunteers are always friendly and happy to answer any questions you may have.
The Gift Shop and Nature Center are open 11-3 M-F and 9-5 on weekends.
Brazos Bend State Park is located southeast of Houston, and 23 miles south of Sugar Land.
This park is one of the best, if not the best, wildlife-viewing state parks in Texas!
Around the many lakes, and sometimes lounging on the paths, are alligators galore. And, there are lots of herons, ducks, ibises, grebes, and gallinules that are fun to see. It’s not uncommon to see Anhingas, Roseate Spoonbills, Belted Kingfishers, Summer Tanagers, and Blue-winged Teals.
There are lots of hiking and biking trails. You cannot help but see deer, especially at dawn and dusk, but if you keep your eyes open, you are also likely to see raccoons, armadillos, Pileated Woodpeckers, and Red-shouldered Hawks. The park is great any time of year, but spring is the best time to go if your aim is to see wildlife. Be sure to look for the Eastern gray squirrels that are red. Some of them are part gray and part reddish (usually auburn). Some have gray bodies and a strawberry blond tail. And, then some are deep auburn from head to tail, like this one.
All the grounds, campsites, restrooms, showers, and trails are well-maintained. Both the staff and volunteers are friendly and helpful. Whether you come to picnic, bike, hike, relax, or camp, be sure to bring your binoculars and camera. You will be glad you did. And while you are there, be sure to visit the Gift Shop and Nature Center.
Alex did an outstanding job drawing the cartoons for our book of animal cartoons: Laughing Gulls. Since he lives in Boston, we did it all by email, and you can too. I’d send him some horribly hand-drawn pictures, explain the joke, and he’d send back the cartoon I had in my head. He followed directions, met deadlines on time, and was always very easy to work with. There are dozens of cartoon examples of his work on his website. If you need artwork done, check him out at PokeGravy.com.