Welcome to our website!
It is over three years since I became President of Friends of Paynes Prairie and FOPP is thriving. This website, with our Social Media
page, are the core of our communication, membership has grown to nearly 500 people, and the on-line membership management and renewal is working smoothly. We have conducted many excellent events and the visitor center renovation project is finally underway. We have received your donations of more than $65,000 towards the renovation of the Visitor Center and contributed more than $140,000 to this project. Fundraising for the project continues.. The prairie changes day to day and season to season, and so do we as we manage and adapt to your needs and suggestions.
Every year, we host 1/4 of a million visitors and have an economic impact in Alachua County of over $10 million. Paynes Prairie is important to Gainesville, Alachua County, and to the State of Florida.
Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park relies on donations from citizens to augment park admissions, user fees, and state support for operations and expenses. The Friends of Paynes Prairie is the Citizen Support Organization (CSO) dedicated to raising funds from supporters of the preserve and directly supporting many preserve activities and expenses, including veterinary care and feed for the bison and horses, equipment expenses, trail upkeep, and visitor center operation.
In addition to money raised, we have a brigade of volunteers who greet visitors at our Visitors Center, maintain trails, photograph all aspects of the Prairie, lead visitors on tours of the Prairie and its trails, and answer the many questions visitors have about the Prairie and its many ecosystems. These volunteers put in over 20,400 hours last year an amount, in dollar terms, equals over $450,000 of volunteer work for the Park.
We believe this site and our links to the Florida Park Service site will work together to educate you about this tremendous resource for North Central Florida. We hope that you will enjoy your visits to the Park. There is much to see and do at Paynes Prairie.