continued Dow, Blais many local teens and adults helped organize a campaign to raise money to build the park, and the Charles Wood Park was chosen as its site. The $60,000 raised leverages a state matching grant of $60,000.
For about five years, fundraisers have included coin drops, spaghetti dinners, garage sales, a skateboard art show and special events, yielding more than $15,000. The Walter Marinelli Memorial Golf Tournament, raised over $15,500. Village officials pledged $20,000 and the Town of Lake George contributed $10,000.
Frankie Cavone, now college-age, took a short break Tuesday from his job at local eatery Pizza Jerks to reflect on what the skate park project meant to him now. Over the last seven years, he’s been to local court four times for the breaking the local law prohibiting skateboarding on public property.
“This is a dream come true, and it’s a good lesson for us, that if we stick together, work hard and never give up, we can accomplish our goals,” he said. “Patricia Dow dedicated so much of her time, going to meeting after meeting with local kids and giving them a voice — it’s unbelievable what she did, and Mayor Blais too — everyone put in their share.”
The skate park is to be built in two phases. The initial stage consists of urban street features with hips, ledges and railings, as designed by local young skateboarders jointly with professional skatepark designers: Action Sports Design Team of Boston as well as Elan Planning of Saratoga Springs.
Cavone said he and many other young adults — and local teenaged skateboarders following his peers — were happy they will soon have a world-class venue to conduct their chosen sport.
“We didn’t settle for something cheesy,” Cavone said. “I’ve been to skateparks all over the U.S. from Massachusetts to California, and I know our local park is going to be the best skate park in the Northeast.”