Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority efforts aim to highlight history along the river

One Victoria founder will take front and center in an online educational program.

The Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority this fall unveils the "Waters to the Sea-Guadalupe River Project," an online effort geared toward educating middle school students about water issues, said Cinde Thomas-Jimenez, GBRA environmental education administrator.

Three historical Texas figures lead students through various parts of the Guadalupe River with Patricia DeLeon, wife of Martin DeLeon, taking the reins at the river's lower portion.

Thomas-Jimenez discussed the up-and-coming program at a Wednesday GBRA board meeting inside First Victoria National Bank's Town Hall Meeting Room.

She said she spoke with five school districts throughout the summer - including the Victoria school district - but plans to continue those efforts in the coming months and probably years.

"When you're dealing with just one grade level, you only get two or three teachers per training, and you feel like you're not making a lot of headway," she said. "But each of those teachers sees 100 to 150 kids a day. So in the grand scheme of things, we're actually already reaching a number of students."

Online projects aren't the only moves in the works to get people involved in the region's history as it relates to the river.

The GBRA has discussions underway with development organizations in regard to a possible heritage trail, said David Welsch, GBRA's executive manager of business development and resource management.

He said the effort would tie together communities along the Guadalupe economically because of the heritage tourism aspect and increase people's appreciation of the region's heritage regarding immigration and the like.

"The Guadalupe River was a highway. It was a road. It was a map," he said. "There's such rich heritage and tourism that can be tied together."