Skatepark organizers seek input from public

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Ramps? Bowls? Half-pipes? Stairs or rails or something else?

Skateboarders, in-line skaters, BMXers and others will have an opportunity to offer suggestions at 7 p.m. next Thursday on the design of a skatepark planned for Carnegie Park on Forsythe Road.

The meeting will be in Cefalo's, 428 Washington Ave. Doors will open at 6:30.

"We need a lot of people there," said Mary Shea Pitcher of the proposed Pitcher Park Memorial Skatepark, which will be a memorial to her sons Vincent, 21, and Stephen, 19, who died in a 2008 drowning accident.

The park will be constructed at a sloping glen near the main picnic grove at the 34-acre park. "I want people to see this isn't just a blob of concrete," she said.

Mrs. Pitcher said she hopes the meeting will attract skateboard enthusiasts from throughout Western Pennsylvania.

On hand for the session will be Micah Shapiro. a marketing and sales manager as well as lead designer for Grindline Skateparks in Seattle, the company that will design and build the new skatepark.

Also in attendance will be Ken Schultz of the Ken and Carol Schultz Foundation, which is donating 85 percent of the project's cost. The remaining 15 percent will be raised through fundraisers and donated services.

Besides looking for what facilities users want to enjoy at the skatepark, the development team is looking for design ideas, too, although they want to keep if clean and green, if possible, she said.

Mrs. Pitcher said the first fundraiser will be a "Trail of Terror" scheduled for 7-11 p.m. Oct. 19-20 and Oct. 26-27 at Carnegie Park.

The trail will feature animated displays, a casket, food and organizers and visitors in costumes.

"The park lends itself beautifully to this. It's going to be awesome," Mrs. Pitcher said. "I walk people through with a flashlight."

Admission is $5 for kids and $7 for adults.

A link that can be downloaded from the park's website,, provides a coupon that will provide admission for a family of four for $20. A list of donors can be found on the website, too.

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Carole Gilbert Brown, freelance writer:


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