SAN ANGELO, Texas (KLST) – Despite the rather wet summer we’ve had, dry conditions and drought are common in the Concho Valley. Before modern running water, old methods of water collection and conserving water included cisterns and cool houses. Those methods are now coming back into homes for things like running washing machines, watering plants, and even drinking.

Conservation is a topic being discussed at Heritage Park; which is teaching children how to best utilize and protect one of the most important resources for the Concho Valley.

Lee Pfluger from Heritage Park explains, “The two different systems that there were out in West Texas, one was the overhead tank, and it flowed water back into the house. The other is an underground system that would keep the water cool. In association with with the overhead system, you’ll see it here at Heritage Park, what we call a cool house. That house was used in West Texas because it was under the water, so the water was a little cooler. That creates insulation for this house and then they quite typically would store meats and long term crops or vegetables or something like that, that need to be kept a little cooler, and they can do that inside the house.”

Pfluger continues, “[Teaching the kids] will maybe give them some ideas about how they can utilize the new systems that are now becoming in vogue, where you, you capture water in a tank near your house, and use it for special uses like for your plants. And for, if, if there’s a water issue for drinking in the house.”

The goal is to teach the youth the importance of water conservation in an area where water can be scarce while also giving a lesson on the history of the Concho Valley and West Texas Water Reclamation methods.