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The Arizona Lottery Honors Earth Month by Maintaining National Forest Campgrounds

Arizona Lottery and the National Forest Foundation to Upgrade Potable Water In Payson

PAYSON, Ariz. (April 22, 2024) As we recognize Earth Month this April, the Arizona Lottery proudly celebrates its commitment to environmental conservation through its ongoing partnership with the National Forest Foundation (NFF) Southwest Program. This collaboration underscores the Lottery's commitment to keeping Arizona’s natural spaces thriving and beautiful by investing in protecting wildlife and the habitats where they live, and educating Arizonans on how they can help.

The Arizona Lottery previously partnered with the National Forest Foundation to support its “Save our Saguaros” campaign and “Wood for Life" program, and this year, the partnership aims to revitalize the recreational infrastructure at a popular Arizona campground site through the  Rim Country Campground Project. This $50,000 investment will improve the visitor experience, accessibility, safety, and sustainability at the campground as well as allow for the planning of a new campground and set of trailheads in the Payson Ranger District of the Tonto National Forest. A portion of the Arizona Lottery’s funding–  $17,5000 — has helped unlock additional potable water upgrades at Christopher Creek.

“The Arizona Lottery is honored to support this program that enhances the camping experience for all who enjoy our public campgrounds,” said Arizona Lottery CEO Alec Thomson. “Additionally, the potable water upgrades will ensure that Arizonans and visitors alike have access to drinking water while visiting our beloved campgrounds.”

Potable water, or drinking water, is obtained from both surface and underground sources and treated to levels that fulfill federal and state regulations for use. This project is not only expanding access to our state’s vital natural resources but will also contribute to securing additional matching federal funds to support this effort.

"Access to safe drinking water is one of the most valued amenities at developed campgrounds. By updating these systems, there will be an improved user experience while reducing impacts on the environment.”

“When the Forest Service resumed management of the Rim Country Campgrounds in 2023, the managers recognized the need to update and modernize the campground infrastructure. The communities of Rim Country welcome thousands of visitors each year, many of whom come to camp and enjoy the outdoors. With the help of the National Forest Foundation and the Arizona Lottery Gives Back program, the Forest Service is seeking to improve equitable access to nature in Rim Country. One of the first priorities will be to update potable water systems at the campgrounds to protect one of Arizona’s most precious resources. Access to safe drinking water is one of the most valued amenities at developed campgrounds. By updating these systems, there will be an improved user experience while reducing impacts on the environment,” added Angie Abel, Recreation Manager for Payson, Tonto Basin, and Pleasant Valley Ranger Districts, Tonto National Forest.

This work aligns with the Arizona Lottery’s ongoing commitment to environmental conservation, complementing the impact of its annual investment of up to $10 million in vital state programs and services that support environmental conservation efforts in Arizona. Since 1994, Arizona Lottery ticket sales have contributed more than $453 million in support of the conservation and protection of the state’s wildlife and natural areas through The Heritage Fund administered by the Arizona Game and Fish Department. Lottery funding is also used to protect endangered species, acquire habitat for the benefit of sensitive species, provide access to outdoor recreational opportunities, and educate children and adults about wildlife in Arizona. For more information on the Arizona Lottery's initiatives for the public benefit, please visit To learn more about the National Forest Foundation, please visit

About Arizona Lottery 

Since 1981, the Arizona Lottery and its retail partners have generated more than $5.5 billion in net funding to support programs that help to improve the quality of life for the people of Arizona. Proceeds from Lottery ticket sales fund programs in higher education, economic development, environmental conservation, and health and human services. The mission of the Lottery is to support Arizona programs for the public benefit by maximizing net revenue in a responsiblemanner. Learn more at

About National Forest Foundation

The National Forest Foundation is the leading organization inspiring personal and meaningful connections to our National Forests, the centerpiece of America’s public lands. Working on behalf of the American public, the NFF leads forest conservation efforts and promotes responsible recreation. We believe these lands, and all they provide, are an American treasure and are vital to the health of our communities.

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