BAR HARBOR — “Decked Out 2014,” a fundraiser for the MDI Skatepark is scheduled to be held at the Northeast Harbor Neighborhood House on Thursday, Aug. 28, from 4-8 p.m.
Fundraising for the group’s dreams of creating a skatepark at the Bar Harbor Athletic Fields continues. Recently, the Tony Hawk Foundation awarded MDISA a $7,500 challenge grant to be matched with $5,000 by January 2015.
The MDI Skatepark Association (MDISA), charged with building the MDI Skatepark at the athletic field, has a hard-working grassroots board of directors. Meeting monthly, the team is made up of scientists, parents, carpenters, a pharmacist, and artists. Over the last seven years, they have navigated the lengthy process of developing a design plan for the skatepark with community input, advocated with the Town of Bar Harbor to allocate the land needed, purchasing the blueprints and consistently raising awareness and funds for each phase of the project.
The skatepark will be strategically located for easy access, safety and incorporated into the outdoor sport venues of our town. It is designed to be a place that encourages youth (and old alike) to get away from the couch and the video games to get outdoors for healthy physical activity. The park is for rollerbladers, scooters, BMX bikes, as well as skateboards. Many of these parks have opened up across the country providing beautiful locations for families and friends to gather for active outdoor fun.
The Town of Bar Harbor has allocated the 8,775 square feet needed for the chosen design (in the corner of Park Street and Main Street) and MDISA agreed to raise the funds for building the park and giving it to the Town of Bar Harbor.
Under the new leadership of Karen Svenson, scientist at the Jackson Lab, the board of directors has focused its efforts on the construction phase. This has involved gathering bids from local, Maine-based contractors and some as far away as the state of Washington. The effort also has involved intense fundraising.