Learn About Friends of Radnor Lake

Founded in 1971

Friends of Radnor Lake (FORL) is a 501c3 nonprofit organization founded in 1971 with the mission to protect, preserve, and promote the natural integrity of Radnor Lake through land acquisition, environmental education, and park support. 

Governed by a Board of 25 members from the Nashville community, FORL provides financial and marketing support for projects at Radnor Lake State Natural Area, helping to connect the community to the activities at Radnor Lake, and providing funding for Board designated projects which fall outside the State budget. FORL Board works closely with the RLSNA Park Manager to determine funding priorities that appropriately support the park, the visitor experience, and the Nashville community.

Ongoing Support Priorities of FORL

  • Volunteer Program
  • Eagle & reptile programs at the Barbara J. Mapp Aviary Education Center
  • Junior Rangers Intern Program and other community education initiatives
  • Land & Trail Management Initiatives
  • Land Acquisition Assessment

As a 501c3 nonprofit organization, FORL may solicit and receive grant funding and other charitable contributions which address specific needs at the park. We leverage contributions from charitable funding sources to enable us to complete large-scale projects which benefit RLSNA.

As the Tennessee State Parks system’s oldest and most successful nonprofit support group, FORL has purchased critical properties and supported protection efforts in many other ways. 

Land Acquisition

Land acquisition involves the identification and acquisition of land that borders Radnor Lake State Natural Area (RLSNA). The Land Committee of the Friends of Radnor Lake Board continually assesses whether any land for sale would protect the RLSNA watershed (which protects wildlife and native plants from runoff chemicals), viewshed, and other sensitive areas from development, and are helped by partners such as The State of Tennessee. View our Land Acquisitions.

Geese in Radnor Lake

Environmental Education

Environmental Education encompasses a number of programs that aim to increase knowledge and awareness of the unique ecosystem and challenges of Radnor Lake by providing funding support for the volunteer program, the Junior Rangers Intern program, and programming at the Barbara J. Mapp Aviary Education Center. FORL considers additional initiatives each year, including installing signage and scopes to provide an increased understanding of the wildlife and ecosystem at RLSNA. There are several additional education opportunities at RLSNA which are funded by the State of Tennessee, including ranger-led hikes and guided canoe floats.

Current park events can be found here: https://tnstateparks.com/parks/events/radnor-lake

Wrangling weeds volunteering

Park Support

Park Support includes providing funding for ongoing needs like trail and land maintenance projects, which at times may exceed the funding provided by the State of Tennessee, and capital projects in the park, like replacing bridges or expanding trails at times when the State needs to conserve funds. The facilitation of the volunteer programs for RLSNA as well as funding for park maintenance and preservation, supporting continuing education and certification attainment for park staff, and restoration projects are all ways in which FORL may provide support to the park and its staff in any given year.