The Madison Skatepark Fund (MSF) is excited to announce a successful beginning to its capital campaign with a series of recent major contributions to Madison’s first public skatepark.
The group’s first major pledge from the business community came from the Willy Street Co-op. Their $50,000 commitment reserves the naming rights for the skatepark bowl. A skateboarding bowl is a large, concrete, pool-style structure. In the 1970s surfers in California began skateboarding in pools when the tide was out, and the tradition lives on today at skateparks all over America. “We were excited when the Co-op said they wanted to be the first private donor; but for a cornerstone of the neighborhood to come along with this level of commitment, really shows the community is behind this project.” according to MSF Spokesdude, Patrick Hasburgh. Brendon Smith, Director of Communications for the Co-op said, “The Skatepark will be a major asset to the neighborhood as well as the city and even county, and we felt it was important to support this community project that was almost in Willy East’s front yard. We’re reallylooking forward to seeing how it turns out!”
The following week, MSF received some more great news. The Madison Community Foundation (MCF) awarded $25,000 towards what will be Madison’s first free, public skatepark. MSF’s Hasburgh said, “MCF only supports the best projects that they know will benefit the community so we feel honored that they have chosen to support our effort to advance skateboarding locally.” MCF awards more than $10 million a year to nonprofit organizations throughout Dane County and beyond. “In addition to being a lynch pin of the long-awaited Central Park, the new skatepark provides Madison with a new fun and creative public space,” said Tom Linfield, Grantmaking & Community Initiatives and Madison Community Foundation Vice President “Madison Community Foundation has funded a variety of destination parks, from splashparks in Middleton, Madison and Fitchburg, to a natural playscape in Marshall, to the Fireman’s Park in Sun Prairie. Funding the new skatepark furthers our commitment to create wonderful, inventive and inclusive public spaces to be enjoyed by all.”
The group was obviously on a roll, but when the Marquette Neighborhood Association (MNA) approved a $10,000 gift towards the skatepark that same week, MSF had real reason to celebrate “All of this community support has really been unbelievable.” says Hasburgh “It’s nice to see that all our hard work and commitment to the skatepark hasn’t gone unnoticed.” “We’re especially excited to support this project given that it will be a highlight of Central Park, located in the heart of the Williamson-Marquette Neighborhood,” said Michael Jacob, President of the Marquette Neighborhood Association.
MSF is an all-volunteer group of skateboarders, parents, and youth advocates who have been working to bring Madison and Dane County it’s first public, destination skatepark for several years. In 2010, the City of Madison agreed to allocate $300,000 in the 2013 Capital Budget towardsthis exciting project. The City also donated the 20,000 square foot parcel within Central Park where the skatepark will be built. In 2012, the Tony Hawk Foundation donated $5,000 plus a $5,000 challenge grant which the group successfully met. This summer, the skatepark was awarded $200,000 through the Dane County Partners for Recreation and Conservation (PARC) grant program. The recent donations bring MSF’s fundraising total approximately $600,000 of the $850,000 total needed to build the skatepark.
“The Madison Skatepark Fund has been the driving force behind this project from the beginning and I couldn’t be happier with their hard work as they continue to work towards their fundraising goal.” says Madison Parks Superintendent, Kevin Briski. The skatepark will be located in Madison’s Central Park, currently under construction. The City of Madison recently selected Stantec/ASD to design the skatepark and plans to break ground on June 30th of 2014.