Mission & Vision
With two sites totaling almost 9,000 acres, the Plains Conservation Center is an outdoor education facility and state-designated natural area. The 1,100-acre Aurora site is located at 21901 E. Hampden Avenue. The West Bijou site, purchased in 2001 and added to in 2006, is located near the Arapahoe County/Elbert County line along West Bijou Creek, south of Strasburg, CO.
The Plains Conservation Center exists to bring the natural wonder of the prairie into the realm of personal experience by: PRESERVING a remnant of the eastern Colorado High Plains, EDUCATING the public about its natural and cultural heritage and NURTURING sound conservation and environmental ethics.
- Residents and visitors on the Colorado high plains value the region’s beauty, diversity, ecological services and cultural heritage. They feel a personal connection to nature and develop a strong sense of place within the short-grass prairie.
- Residents, businesses and communities live lives and make daily choices that are consciously interconnected with their local ecosystem and sustainable.
- The short-grass prairie ecosystem and its native biota are protected for perpetuity as an intact, healthy regional ecosystem.
Our Guiding Principles
Leaders in Conservation
Leading by example is the most powerful, meaningful and inspirational way to share messages of sustainability. We practice and promote sound environmental ethics and good stewardship of our natural and cultural resources. PCC staff, board and volunteers are encouraged to be positive role models and good stewards of the environment.
Connect to Nature
We value the importance of a personal relationship with the natural world. We recognize the significance of providing outdoor experiences for all ages, especially for young children. We strive to provide hands-on, inquiry-based programs in nature.
Programs Based on Accurate Information
Programs and services offered to the community are based in the most relevant, current and accepted scientific data available.
We strive to provide visitors the best experience possible. We listen to the communities which we serve and desire to serve in order to develop programs and services that our communities desire and enjoy that support our mission.
Volunteers are Essential Partners
We value the contributions and the impact that can be made by ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Volunteers and citizen scientists are essential in achieving PCC’s mission and vision.
Learn from the Past
Learning how past cultures have existed and interacted with the prairie increases our understanding of the prairie and can inform us how to best live sustainably today.
Partnerships Make Us Stronger
We cultivate partnerships and accept support from organizations that operate in concert with our mission, vision and guiding principles.
Staff and volunteers are constantly striving to improve their knowledge, skills and adhere to standards of best practices in our field.