Thursday, October 31, 2013

Trick Or Treat, Smell Our Feet, Give us an Annual Support Campaign Treat!

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Today is the final day of our Annual Support Campaign. We are so close to hitting our goal of raising $150,000 this month, but we still have about $7,000 to go. 

We rely on those who love and use the Katy Trail to take care of it. Tax dollars don't fund the Katy Trail - you do! GIVE BACK TODAY to keep it clean, safe and beautiful.

Your donation will help fund:
  • Off-duty police officers to patrol the trail
  • 3.5 miles of electric and water bills
  • Organic landscaping
  • Day to day maintenance for 20 acres of trail 
This is our LAST CALL for donations. If you haven't made your Annual Support Campaign gift already, today is the day to do it. 

Make sure the Katy Trail has a Happy Halloween and donate today!

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Annual Support Campaign Kicks Off Today!

Dear Friends of the Katy Trail, 

Bring on the pumpkin lattes - October is here! And while you are busy planning for your fall festivities - we are gearing up to end our fundraising season with a bang. Each October, Friends of the Katy Trail conducts an Annual Support Campaign to make sure we don't only reach our fundraising goal for 2013, but that we surpass it to make the Katy Trail even better for you!

15,000 people use the Katy Trail each week and it is expensive to maintain. Your tax dollars don't go towards funding the Trail - that is why we rely on donations from all of you that love and use the trail. The Annual Support Campaign goal is to raise $150,000 this month. That may seem like a big number, but just think; if everyone who used the Katy Trail gave $10, we would reach our goal is one short week!

Even if you are already a donating member of Friends of the Katy Trail, please consider a little something extra this month. Every donation goes right back in to the Trail providing things like:

•Lights, we've got 3.5 miles of electricity bills to pay each month.
•And the same goes for water. Not just for you and your dog at the water fountains - the vegetation along the Trail needs to drink too.
•Off duty police officers to patrol the Trail, especially during peak hours and after dark.
•Organic landscaping for the 20+ acres of Trail.

Thank you for helping us keep the Katy Trail a clean, safe and beautiful transportational park! 

Happy Trails,
  lauren sig
  Lauren Whitson
  Membership and Marketing Director

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

September Social!

Last year on North Texas Giving Day, you helped us raise more than $23,000! We know we can top that this year, and to celebrate, we are throwing a party! Hop on the Katy Trail next Thursday and meet us at the Katy Trail Ice House! They will be graciously serving up cocktails and delicious bites for all of our Friends! The event is free, however we do recommend making a donation of $25 or more to support our North Texas Giving Day efforts. Donations can be made on September 19th at or we can help you make your gift at the event!

Thursday, September 19th
2 cocktails and bar bites provided

Even if you can't make the social, you can still GIVE on North Texas Giving Day! Donations of $25 or more made on September 19th through will be partially matched - your dollars will go farther!

North Texas Giving Day has been generating millions of dollars for North Texans over the years. With more than a million dollars up for grabs in matching funds this year alone - September 19th is the perfect day to give. The Katy Trail needs you!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Mark Your Calendars

North Texas Giving Day is coming up on September 19th! Last year, you all helped us raise more than $23,000 on North Texas Giving Day and we know we can do even better this year! Since its launch in 2007, North Texas Giving Day has generated more than 34 million dollars. All gifts of $25 or more made on September 19th will be partially  matched – your donation goes farther on September 19th!

And, we want YOU to help us celebrate. From 5-7pm we will celebrate North Texas Giving Day with a little happy hour at one of our favorites, Katy Trail Ice House! Guests will receive two complimentary cocktails and light food.  This event is open to non-members, however we ask everyone to consider a donation of $25 or more on North Texas Giving Day. If you don't get a chance to donate during the day, we will be able to assist you at the event. Please RSVP to Lauren Whitson if you can join us on September 19th.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Going Green to Save Your Green

You may be thinking there’s something a little different about us and you are right! In an effort to be environmentally conscience and to put more of your donated dollars back in to the Katy Trail, we have switched to an e-newsletter. We also thought this would be a good time to revamp our email layout to really complete the look. We are working hard to improve our communications on all levels and to keep our supporters better informed of our operations because after all, the trail runs on you!

What do you think? We always appreciate feedback so send us your thoughts at

Bidding Adieu to a Dedicated Volunteer

For many years there has been a quiet Trail user among us who has played a large role in the Katy Trail’s upkeep. Peyton Weaver has had a long standing passion for the Katy Trail and has worked hard in many arenas to better the Katy Trail for you.

Peyton has donated so much of his free time to the Katy Trail. For several years he stocked the dog waste bags along the Trail, he created flyers about membership and placed them along the Trail, has helped with set up for the Katy 5K and even helped our move unwanted bulky items out of our office.

Peyton has a heart for the Trail and we are sad to see him go. After 43 years in Dallas, Peyton will leave to be with family. We are extremely appreciative of all his hard work over the years and we wish him all the best.

 If you would like to get more involved with the Katy Trail, let us know.

Commitment Comes Rain or Shine for the Michelob Ultra Katy 5K!

A big thank you for all who braved the volatile weather and came out to sponsor, volunteer, donate and participate in our Michelob Ultra Katy 5K! This was the 15th annual Katy 5K which is our biggest fundraiser of the year bringing in over $200,000 for maintenance and operations.  Friends of the Katy Trail rely heavily on events to fund Trail upkeep and all who participate in the Michelob Ultra Katy 5K don’t just have a good time – they help the Trail!

For the past three years the Michelob Ultra Katy 5K has sold out with 5,000 participants and this year was no different. While we did have some no shows due to the earlier thunderstorms, the clouds parted ways and the sun began to shine 30 minutes before the event kicked off with the kids .5K (half a kilometer). Children up to 13 can participate; many run alongside their enthusiastic parents, and all receive a special medal when they cross the finish line.

At 7pm the 5K began outside Reverchon Park. The starting line was full of outrageous costumes, custom shirts with encouraging slogans and a team of runners dressed in blue and yellow running for Boston. The first runner to cross the finish line was Jacob Phillips with a time of 15:11 and that is when the real fun began. More than 50 restaurants came out to provide free food to all of our participants and of course, you could find a Michelob Ultra tent within a stones throw of just about anywhere in the park.  DJ Lucy Wrubel had people of all ages dancing throughout the park and so many of our sponsors had great games and giveaways for even more fun.

What keeps the Michelob Ultra Katy 5K thriving as great local event is the help from all of our sponsors. Whether it was a monetary donation or providing food and drinks to the thousands – we couldn't do it without them. Special thanks to our title sponsors Michelob Ultra and Ben E. Keith and other top sponsors including Luke’s Locker, American National Bank of Texas and Travis Walk/Terrace House.

See all participating sponsors and restaurants.

We are also fortunate to have a group of dedicated volunteers on our 5K Committee who start planning months in advance to ensure a successful event especially our fearless leaders, Co-Chairs Becky Frey, Matt Lucas and Paige Nash. Thank you for all you do!

Katy Trail Up for Adoption

Earlier this year we were approached by William Addy of ISN on how his company could do more for the Katy Trail. It all started back in October when Mr. Addy had donated to our Annual Support Campaign.  Several of his staff saw his name recognized on a thank you banner on the Trail and told him how much they appreciated his generosity. After realizing how many of his staff were avid Katy Trail users he knew he wanted the company to do more to not only benefit the Trail, but to also teach his staff the importance of community philanthropy.

After several discussions it was decided that ISN would the first organization ever to adopt a portion of the Katy Trail – mile markers 104-108 to be exact. Over the next 4 years ISN will donate to the Katy Trail to help maintain the area. Four signs have been installed between these mile markers to recognize the generous donation from ISN. We are grateful for ISN for this generous donation and hope that their initiative sparks interest from other businesses and donors to adopt their own portion of the Trail. For more information, please contact our office at 214.303.1180.

Beat the Heat

We all know that summers in Dallas are brutal. But, you and your dogs can still safely use the Katy Trail, you just have to be smart about it. Here are some good tips:

  • Stay hydrated before, during, and after your time on the Trail.
  • Wear plenty of sunscreen and a hat. Bug spray is a good idea too.
  • Moderate your time on the Trail. That 3.5 mile run is harder on your body now that temperatures have soared.
  • If you are feeling over heated, run-down, or dizzy; take a time-out in the shade with some water.
  • Consuming alcohol, caffeine and sugary drinks can leave you dehydrated. Limit your intake 24 hours before prolonged activity in sun. 
  • Avoid too much sun - sunburns reduce your body's ability to dissipate heat.
  • Be a good steward on the Trail. If you see someone struggling or acting out of sorts, please offer assistance.
  • And as always, in case of emergency please call 911 and direct them to the nearest Trail mile marker.
One Katy Trail user has gone above and beyond. Sue Krider teamed up with Allie Beth Allman and Associates and donated 70 cases of water to the Trail. If you see the Katy Trail golf cart go by there is most likely water on board so feel free to ask. It was donated to help keep you cool!

You may have also noticed our signs along the Trail for our four legged Trail users. Dogs get hotter much faster than we do and their bodies aren’t able to cool down as quickly as ours. They don’t wear running shoes either so if the path is hot to the touch, it’s too hot for your dog. Dogs can't tell you when they are hot so please use caution when exercising your pet!

Support for Friends of the Katy Trail Rolls In

Each year the small staff of two at the Friends of the Katy Trail office is challenged to raise more than $600,000 to pay for all maintenance and improvements of the 3.5 mile hike and bike Trail. That money is raised through memberships and private donations from individuals, corporations and foundations. This summer we have been fortunate to be the recipient of several gifts from generous neighbors in the community. In May, Preston Center Rotary Club granted the Friends of the Katy Trail $2,000 at their annual Charities Day. And just a few weeks ago, Uptown Dallas presented us with a check for $8,750 from money raised at their highly attended Celebrate Uptown.

Thank you to Preston Center Rotary Club, Uptown Dallas and all those who make donating the Friends of the Katy Trail a priority. The reason we have such an incredible resource in the heart of Dallas is because of you!