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Skate park breaks ground

Ken Mickelsen, Bremerton Parks Director addresses the crowd at the Bremerton Skatepark groundbreaking. Several members of Bremerton Skateboarders and Supporters United symbolically shoveled the dirt with golden shovels.  - Photo by Sean Janssen
Ken Mickelsen, Bremerton Parks Director addresses the crowd at the Bremerton Skatepark groundbreaking. Several members of Bremerton Skateboarders and Supporters United symbolically shoveled the dirt with golden shovels.
— image credit: Photo by Sean Janssen

A dream for some local teens became a reality Thursday, July 14, at the corner of Magnuson Way and Homer Jones Drive.

An afternoon ceremony marked the groundbreaking on the long-awaited Bremerton Skate Park.

Mayor Cary Bozeman opened the ceremony with a welcome to the community members who came to see the work get underway.

Bozeman said the park is important to making Bremerton attractive to young families.

“It adds to our ability to make this a great place for kids,” Bozeman said. “This thing will serve people in the community for the next 50 years.”

Bozeman asked the young skating enthusiasts who formed Bremerton Skateboarders and Supporters United (BSSU) in order to get a quality skate park built in Bremerton to come forward and be the ones to put the shovels in the dirt.

“The high schoolers and young people actually got the ball rolling for the project,” said Jodi Wroblewski, administrative assistant for Bremeton Parks & Recreation.

Wroblewski said skaters previously had to go to Silverdale or Kingston for a park like the one being built in Bremerton.

“They participated in the planning and the design of the skate park,” Wroblewski said. “The kids really came up with the idea.”

“It took lots of time on the computer hacking away at it but it was a lot of fun seeing it as it developed,” said Mark Martin, a BSSU member for the past four years. Martin developed the 3-D rendered image of the park’s design.

Lisa Gordon, a health teacher, got involved with the BSSU cause.

“I’ve always been interested in skateboarding. I used to skate...when I was 11 years old,” Gordon said. “I happened to be an adult and...a teacher and so I was able to help.”

“I started (on BSSU) my junior year. This year, my senior year I gave extra motivation to (Gordon), helping her set up appointments,” said skateboarder Brad Storey.

The park will cost $254,124 and be built by T.S. Sahli of Renton, Wroblewski said. The total area of the park will come in slightly less than 10,000 square feet and construction is expected to take “no more than 90 days,” Wroblewski said.

“It’s a street-element skate park,” Wroblewski said. “It’s based on rails, ramps, stairs and sidewalks. There’s no bowls or half-pipes.”

Funding came from a variety of sources including the Bremerton Community Development Block Grant, Lions Charitable Foundation, Kitsap County and the Washington State IAC/Wildlife and Recreation Program Grant, Wroblewski said.

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