Carthage’s new walking trail is expected to be up and ready for running by the end of the month.

City Manager Steve Williams updated commissioners on the project last week, saying things were on track.

“If it’s not done, it will be done soon, all the concrete, and then they’ll start the part through the woods,” Williams said. “(I) met with contractors and consultants and got a good plan on finishing that up. That’s coming along real well.”

The park’s Phase One, in construction now, includes a trailhead at the small parking lot near the Panola County Appraisal District and EMS building. The walking path winds around the ballpark for about three-fourths of a mile.

Two bridges are planned, along with benches, tables, landscaping and a water fountain. Sacks and receptacles for pet refuse will also be installed.

The $249,311 project is funded with a state grant, a donation from the Charles C. Matthews Foundation and community fundraisers.

Phase Two of the walking trail, if the city gets another state grant, proposes taking the trail down past the softball fields, around the soccer fields and over to the Carthage Civic Center.

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Carthage native Meredith Shamburger has worked for the Panola Watchman since 2018. Before that, she worked at sister papers in Longview and Marshall; the Dallas Morning News; and The Daily Voice, a hyperlocal news company in Westchester County, New York.