Ty Swenson
Mark Jackson and his son Merek (5) traveled from Lynnwood to skate the new Roxhill Park Skatepark on April 20. The skatepark and renovated Roxhill Castle Playground were officially unveiled for community use on the 20th.

SLIDESHOW: Roxhill Park comes alive to celebrate renovations

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April 20th was a day of celebration for the West Seattle community as the renovations at Roxhill Park were officially unveiled for everyone’s use, including a renovated “Roxhill Castle” playground and new skatepark.

Both the playground and skatepark were filled to the brim with smiling kids and adults as a new favorite gathering spot came to fruition.

Seattle Parks and Recreation hosted the event at 2850 S.W. Roxbury St. to thank taxpayers for contributing to the Parks and Green Spaces Levy, and praise the many, many volunteers who helped build the playground. The event was filled with skateboard lessons, giveaways, music and refreshments.

Mat McBride, Delridge Neighborhood District Council Chair and Roxhill Volunteer Coordinator, deserves much credit for bringing the community together to vastly improve the park, while West Seattle-based Grindline Skateparks won the bid to build the skatepark.

“I didn’t understand the importance of this park when I signed on. But I get it now: kids need a place that is special, just for them, something that says ‘I value you.’ Well, nothing says ‘I value you’ quite like ‘I built this for you with my hands,’” McBride said.

“This park is a testament to the work of everyone who believed that,” he added, “I’m honored to have been a part of it.”

West Seattle dad Scott Noble was enjoying the park with his 3-year-old son Noble during the celebration, and said, "I think it’s great that the community all chipped in to build it. It’s a positive place, I’m excited. I liked the old design, but I think this has a better feel to it."

"It's good!" Noble succinctly added.

As for the skatepark, young and old were attacking the terrain as competitions and free giveaways were handed out.

Mark Jackson and his five-year-old son Merek traveled from Lynnwood to skate. They started skating at the same time, have the same neon-orange mohawks, and Mark said Merek is already surpassing him in skill. They both loved the course, a sentiment echoed by several skaters on the day who gave it a "9/10" and said the "flow" of the park allowed for ample time to set up tricks and capture video of friends pulling off impressive maneuvers.

The skatepark was built as part of Seattle’s Citywide Skatepark Plan to provide kids and adults alike a safe and legal place to hone their skills. It was built as a “plaza,” meaning the park has features that might be found around the city where skateboarding is generally not allowed.

The Parks and Green Spaces Levy allowed the Parks Dept. to spend $450,000 on planning, designing and renovating the playground, while $600,000 was set aside for the skatepark. The community was also awarded a Department of Neighborhoods grant of $20,000 for the work, and professional skateboarder Rob Dydrek donated design services and features for the skatepark.

In a statement, Seattle Parks and Recreation wrote, “Roxhill Park improvements are the result of many public/private partnerships working together. This event celebrates both the completion of the project and the amazing work done by the neighborhood, the extended West Seattle community and the entire skate community.”

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