The Athens Leadership Institute Splash Pad project got a boost from the Athens Economic Development Cooperation Board on Thursday, but not as big as the amount that was requested.
The AEDC voted to grant $20,000 toward the Splash Pad. The allocation pushes the fundraising effort to more than $120,000 of the estimated $200,000 cost. The $20,000 makes the AEDC the second-largest contributor to the splash pad effort to date.
“This will be considered essentially a city park project,” AEDC President and CEO Brian Malone said. “Obviously if we do approve the funds it will be subject to city council approval and also ... a public hearing.”
Athens City Administrator Pam Burton said the Splash Pad definitely falls under the definition of a public project which allows the AEDC to contribute the money.
“It is not a gray area. It is clear,” Burton said.
During the January 10 AEDC meeting, Tony Kalawe, representing the Athens Chamber of Commerce, asked for $75,000 to help build the 2,300-square-foot pad. Project organizers are hoping to have funds completely raised by March and have the pad ready to use by summer.
The AEDC also voted to give the Henderson County Black Rodeo Association $2,000 for the 2013 Juneteenth Rodeo. The AEDC action requires the approval of the City Council to take effect. The board decision came after a lengthy discussion in which members of the board voiced concern over whether the AEDC could grant money to an event.
Black Rodeo Association CEO Jeffery Enoch asked the board for $5,000 to help meet initial expenses for the rodeo. The Rodeo Association is budgeting $22,900 to produce the event, which Enoch said drew about 5,000 people last year.
Enoch said the AEDC contribution would not only help fund the June rodeo, but in turn, money raised at the event would help fund other projects the association is planning. Among the Black Rodeo Association goals, Enoch said, is to obtain a building for community services such as youth mentoring, afterschool tutoring, adult day care and GED classes.
AEDC board member Joe Masso said he would be interested to know to what degree the money raised during the Juneteenth Rodeo would be used for education and the creation of job skills. Masso said the Rodeo Association could come back at a later time and request help with those projects.
Fund-raising effort nearing $130,000 mark
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Palestine library hosts Angel Tree for veterans
Palestine Public Library is partnering with the local veterans groups to make sure area veterans are remembered this Christmas.
‘Mary Did You Know’
The members and guests at Payne Springs United Methodist Church Fellowship Night dinner were blessed by the Mabank High School Panther Edition on Wednesday, Dec. 4. The choir performed "Mary Did You Know," along with a medley of favorite TV theme songs. These students practice everyday, along with their regular school curriculum. “It does your heart good to see young students so dedicated and talented,” an attendee said. The Panther Edition Christmas program will be Dec. 17. Mark your calendar for an entertaining evening.
It’s a boom time for criminals
Christmas is a boom time for cybercriminals with spam e-mails, fake sites and fake products used to lure bargain hunters to their sites. Beware of the viruses that could possibly be lurking in these sites.
Henderson County police departments routinely check out possible scams and viruses that could effect the area. Recently, Infosecurity Magazine reported of a trojan virus that is set to target banking websites nationwide. Area police departments encourage citizens to be watchful while using the Internet, and keep a close eye on their transaction.
Enrollment deadline nears
With the impending deadline for open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act (ACA), insurance agents from around the county are scrambling to provide as much information as possible on the new law.
Lana Mock, with Skip Smith Insurance, spoke to the Cedar Creek Lake Area Chamber of Commerce (CCLACC) Seven Points/Tool/Kemp Branch members about what they can expect from the ACA. Mock tried to answer as many questions as she could.
Upgrades continue at Chandler parks
Chandler City Administrator John Taylor updated the Chandler Parks and Recreation board on several of the ongoing projects at the three city parks - Winchester, River and McCain.
Winchester Park is the most-used facility and includes five baseball fields, a walking trail, lighted horse shoe pits, fishing pond, exercise course, playground and a pavilion.
Tournament fees proposed
As field five near completion at Winchester Park in Chandler, the city's Parks and Recreation Board is looking at various ways for the facility to help fund future park improvements.
One of the areas discussed Wednesday, Dec. 4 during the special-scheduled meeting of the board was to recommend pricing and profit sharing for future non-league baseball and softball tournaments to the city council.
Pinnacle Church serves the Chapman House
The Pinnacle Church has taken The Chapman House under its wing by providing the necessary support for the organization to help its residents recover from their addictions.
Eustace Christmas on the Square set for Dec. 14
Mayor Elicia Sanders invites everyone in Eustace and the surrounding area to attend the 17th annual Christmas On the Square celebration Dec. 14 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
All aboard the Polar Express!
Get ready for an unforgettable experience as two Athens-area organizations are preparing for showings of the hit movie, “The Polar Express.”
The first showing of the movie will be this weekend at the Henderson County Clint W. Murchison Memorial Library.
A royal event
Miss Texas 2013, Ivana Hall, will join a royal celebration at the Cain Center in Athens on Sunday, Dec. 8, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
The event is hosted by the Cain Center, along with the Henderson County Historical Museum. The reining Miss Texas will honor the 50th Anniversary of Miss Texas 1964 Sharon McCauley from Athens.
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