Wixom residents and visitors will find new trail map holders and benches throughout city parks thanks to the efforts of 17-year-old Jordan McMahan, who spearheaded the improvements as part of his Eagle Leadership Service Project.
The four trail map holders have been placed at the Wixom Habitat and Gibson, Gunnar Mettala, and Gilbert Willis parks. They holders will house the Oakland Routes Trail Network Maps. The goal is to encourage more pedestrians to utilize the trail system throughout Oakland County, promote fitness, and provide close-to-home opportunities for exercise.
The two benches have been situated near the community gardens in Gibson Park as a resting area for park visitors and gardeners.
“The Department of Public Works has complemented me on the work and the map holders are used a lot,” McMahan said. “I drove by and they were empty, so I assume people are using them.”
The enhancements were completed last month.
“I started it in June, but the execution took about three weeks,” he said.
A portion of the funding for the projects was derived from a bottle drive fund-raiser, but the city chipped in for the map holders and supplies.
“As for the benches, I paid for those on my own,” McMahan said.
To begin an Eagle Scout project, one must plan, develop and give leadership to others in a service project helpful to religious, educational, or community organizations other than the Boy Scouts. The project must be approved by the organization selected, two scout masters, and one scout district council person.
To work up to the Eagle Scout level, a candidate must complete a leadership project where others assist in the process.
“A few people pitched in from my troop, but the majority who helped were from marching band,” McMahan said.
McMahan began scouting in second-grade and is currently a member of Troop No. 172. His goal is to receive his Eagle Scout ranking by the end of the year.
McMahan is a senior at Huron Valley Lakeland High School. In addition to scouting, he plays in marching band and jazz band, and takes part in winter drum line.
McMahan’s goal is to attend the University of Michigan next year.