Two years ago, the Denton County town of 120 residents renamed itself DISH in exchange for 10 years of free satellite TV service. The city is also building a library, thanks largely to contributions such as used shelving from a library in nearby Justin and $2,500 in computers from Crosstex Energy. "Just beat the street," the mayor, Calvin Tillman, says.
Now, DISH has scored again, getting Chesapeake Energy to donate $22,000 worth of playground equipment toward the $32,000 cost of building a new playground at City Hall. The announcement went out Wednesday afternoon. Tillman says the town hopes the library and playground will both be complete by the time school lets out later this Spring.
"It's a very generous donation," Tillman says, of Chesapeake's contribution. Chesapeake will present the check to the mayor, 7 p.m. tonight at City Hall, 5413 Tim Donald Road. The playground will include swingsets, slides, playhouse, balance beam, and monkey bars.
"We felt it was important to give back to this community who is working hard to improve the quality of life for its citizens and provide additional services that were not available to this small town," Jerri Robbins, Chesapeake's manager of Barnett Shale public relations, said.
DISH is in the heart of Barnett Shale country. Chesapeake will operate some compressors in the area that will help transport gas from its drilling at D/FW Airport into a pipeline network. Crosstex and Atmos Energy also have interests in the area. Atmos is donating $8,000 in labor to help build the playground.
Residents and city officials have been watching the gas companies closely.
-- Scott Nishimura