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Heath, Texas The City of Heath recently launched Parks And Trails Of Heath, a new fund raising program that gives citizens and local businesses the opportunity to help accelerate the expansion and improvement of the City's parks and trail system.

Charter donors who have made the startup of this City of Heath Park Board initiative possible are Impact Selector International, a Heath-based global oil and gas company that made a $10,000 contribution; the Heath Economic Development/Heath Municipal Benefits Corporations, which have invested over $200,000 in the local parks system during the past year; and Tom Thumb and Malouf Interests with a $1,000 donation at the store's grand ppening.

“Good parks and trails help make good communities," Mayor Kelson Elam said. “We are incredibly grateful to the Park Board and these charter donors for spearheading a program that will unite and strengthen our community through great parks, trails and green spaces that reflect Heath's unique character and meet the recreational needs of citizens of every age and life stage.”

Citizens can become charter members of PATH for as little as a monthly $5 or $10 donation on their utility bills. There is also the opportunity to make an annual one-time donation at the $500, $1,000, $5,000 or $10,000 level. Charter member benefits include t-shirts, car decals, landscape signs and recognition in the City’s monthly newsletter and website.

Initial PATH-funded projects are focused on improving Towne Center Park, located at the heart of Heath and along the Towne Center Overlay District, which is designed to be walkable and bikeable with trails already running around and through the Tom Thumb retail center and connecting to Towne Center Park. 

Phase 1 will beautify and shade the park with new trees and shade structures. Future project ideas include adding new playground equipment, an adult work-out circuit and more water fountains for people and pets. The most ambitious plans include a splash pad or other seasonal activities and a gathering/entertainment space such as an amphitheater.

These projects were identified by citizens as top priorities during the process of updating the City's Parks, Trails and Recreation Master Plan in 2018. There were multiple opportunities for citizen input as the plan was developed, including public hearings, an online survey and a community event attended by more than 200 residents.

Details on how to get involved and an online membership/donor form at www.heathtx.com.  PATH volunteers will also be at the final Heath Farmers Market on Nov. 30 and Holiday in the Park on Dec. 6. All contributions to PATH are tax deductible in accordance with Section 170(c) (1) of the Internal Revenue Code if made exclusively for a public purpose such as the city’s park system. 

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