Poudre Heritage Alliance

The Poudre River is recognized by Congress for its role in shaping western water law and water management systems. PHA connects people to their river legacy by promoting historical and cultural opportunities; engaging people in the river corridor; & inspiring learning, preservation, & stewardship.

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General Information

Official Name
Poudre Heritage Alliance a Colorado Nonprofit Corporation​​​​​​​
DBA/Trade Name(s)
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Date Established
Offers Additional Colorado State Tax Credit
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Headquarters Address
Colorado Location
Mailing Address
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Administrative Offices
3745 E. Prospect Ste 205
Fort Collins, CO 80525
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Social Media Links

Mission Statement

The Poudre Heritage Alliance (PHA) serves the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA), providing current and future generations the opportunity to understand and celebrate the area by careful planning and facilitation of educational programs and related amenities in collaboration with residents, private sector and government entities.

Organization History

The Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA) is one of 55 cultural and natural landscapes that have been set aside by Congress as irreplaceable sources of life and inspiration.

Established in 1996, with official legislative designation as the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area following in 2009, CALA follows 45 miles of the lower "working Cache." Along this river section you can see reservoirs, pipelines, diversion ditches, pumps - all reminders of the long struggle to sustain a viable agricultural economy and meet the growing needs of an expanding population, while conserving the river's health.

And, because the Poudre River is also a premiere recreation and learning destination, you will find people tubing, kayaking, rafting, exploring, studying, fishing, wading, walking, biking and more!

The Poudre Heritage Alliance, managing nonprofit entity of CALA, launched in 2003 and immediately started working with partners in Larimer and Weld County, as well as the National Park Service, to develop the National Heritage Area's Management Plan.

The Poudre River is vital to northern Colorado for many reasons:
• The Poudre River basin laid the foundation for western water law, water management
and the evolution of complex water delivery systems.
• More than 634,000 Coloradoans currently depend on the Cache la Poudre River.
• CALA generates an estimated $81.6 million dollars per year for the local economy.

The Cache la Poudre River flows through Colorado's history, linking its people, history, and arteries of commerce. It has been counted on for moments of great drama, and for attracting its share of characters. Whether the Poudre's benefits are emotional or economical, there is no denying its appeal.


Dear Poudre Heritage Alliance and the Poudre Learning Center Staff,

The first grade classes at Cottonwood Plains elementary recently went on a field trip to the Poudre Learning Center. My teaching partners and I were extremely impressed with the entire experience-from planning to follow up. Every staff member I contracted was so helpful, accommodating and positive. It was one of the best field trip experiences we have had and I am so excited to make this an annual event. Thank you so much for the grant for our transportation and working with us to enhance our students' experience. Have a wonderful summer and keep your heads above water!

Laurie Lambert
Samantha Minnis
Laura Yaussi
Janet Williams

From Jennifer Beccard, Executive Director of the Poudre Landmarks Foundation, in a letter to Congressman Jared Polis:

This grant, made possible by federal funding through the National Heritage Areas Program, helped our organization achieve the next step in our quest to preserve and upgrade this 23-acre site into a Northern Colorado Water Interpretation Center. The City of Fort Collins-owned site is managed by our organization and was the first public works project for the City of Fort Collins. Several previous historic preservation projects funded in part by the Colorado State Historical Fund have stabilized the Water Works building. In 2014/2015, Poudre Heritage Alliance along with the State Historical Fund and the City of Fort Collins provided funds for our Construction Document project that provided us with detailed documents, analysis, and cost estimates to position us for construction at the site. This current Phase 2 project provided key information about the site soils/drainage and projected traffic flows. The City of Fort Collins contributed to this Phase 2 project by using our 2015 Construction Documents to upgrade the Water Works entrance gate, roadway turn-off, the vehicle turn-around to meet code and accommodate large emergency vehicles and bus access.

When complete, the proposed Water Interpretation Center will provide Northern Colorado with a central location dedicated to water history, water law, and water distribution information. The entire Water Works project is crucial to our mission of preserving, restoring, protecting, and interpreting the architectural and cultural heritage of the Fort Collins area.
Poudre Landmarks Foundation is very appreciative of your continued support of National Heritage Areas. The Cache la Poudre River National Heritage is one of only three National Heritage Areas in Colorado and one of only 49 in the entire United States. Your endorsement and continued financial support of National Heritage Areas is very significant and greatly valued.

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