City of AustinFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Since 2000, the Splash! Exhibit held at the Beverly S. Sheffield Education Center, part of the Barton Springs Bathhouse, has taught locals and visitors about the unique habitat that the Austin blind salamander and Barton Springs salamander call home.
As a continuation of the Barton Springs Bathhouse Rehabilitation project, the education center will be receiving a facelift. The Austin Parks and Recreation Department (PARD) invites community members to a meeting on Dec. 5, 2019, to share about what Splash! has meant to them and to help PARD identify how a revitalized exhibit space can continue to educate the next generation of visitors to Barton Springs.
Beverly S. Sheffield Education Center Community Meeting
Barton Springs Bathhouse Rotunda
2201 William Barton Road Andrew, Austin, TX 78746
Dec. 5, 2019, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Barton Springs Pool is home to two endangered species: the Barton Springs salamander and Austin blind salamander. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service of the Department of the Interior permit allows for the continued operation of Barton Springs as a pool for people to enjoy alongside the salamanders. Due to the needed ecological sensitivity required for this space, the City of Austin created a Barton Springs Pool Habitat Conservation Plan. Within the permitted plan, the City is required to provide at least $45,000 annually to salamander education efforts. The Splash! Exhibit receives nearly 70,000 visitors annually. The Splash! Exhibit hosts programs for Austin Independent School District students as part of the Austin Nature & Science Center school programs and Austin Watershed Protection Department’s Earth Camp. It is also home to the Austin Nature & Science Center’s summer camps for ages 9 to 15. Together these programs served over 16,000 participants annually, many of whom are from traditionally underserved communities.