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Donation allows museum to purchase tram

The Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center Foundation donated $10,000 to go toward the purchase of a tram, similar to the one in this photo, to provide better access to children, the disabled and elderly of the museum’s campus.

The Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center Foundation donated $10,000 to go toward the purchase of a tram, similar to the one in this photo, to provide better access to children, the disabled and elderly of the museum’s campus.

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The Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center Foundation presented a donation of $26,000 to the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center Tuesday. This donation will be used for the purchase of a concession trailer and a 21-passenger tram, which would allow the elderly others with special needs to have access to the EHC’s nature trails. (Submitted photo)

LAWRENCEVILLE — Thanks to a donation, the access to the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center will improve for seniors and children, officials said.

Commissioners approved a total $26,000 donation to the Buford-area museum Tuesday, with $10,000 going toward the purchase of a passenger tram.

The tram is intended to allow seniors, small xhildren, expectant mothers, those with disabilities and others to access the center’s vast acreage, which includes trails, a farm exhibit, a historic home and other locations where programs are often held.

While an overflow parking lot will soon open a distance from the main museum, the tram will also help with field trips, said Community Services Director Phil Hoskins.

“If you have a group of second-graders, by the time you walk down (to an outdoor program), you have to head right back,” Hoskins said, adding that the tram will be pulled by a tractor donated by AGCO.

The Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center Foundation’s donation also includes a transportable concession trailer, valued at $16,000, that will allow the center to generate more revenue, during upcoming outdoor festivals and programs planned with the recent opening of a new festival field at the site.

Commissioner Lynette Howard, who formerly worked as a teacher at the center, thanked the foundation during a check presentation Tuesday.

“I thank you so much for this check to allow us to have even more programs,” she said. “You can learn so much there.”