Posted by Timothy FitzGerald on Jul 19, 2019
"Why Not Waterford" (kids need a place to go) That's what Marlene McCulligh and Kerry Bockenholt (Kerry's St. James St. Eatery) thought when kids started doing projects about the hamlet.
There's no graffiti on these projects because the kids themselves planned and implemented them and took ownership of the projects. it was wonderful to see a diverse group of kids walk into a room, help each other out and become knit into one being.  (Our Rotarian John Featherstone, on the left thanking Marlene and Kerry, and joking that he grew up in Waterford and there was no place to go!) 
So Why Not a Skatepark? How do you accomplish that? Marlene and Kerry are both doers. Kerry on the right is the talkative one and said that if you involve every group in Waterford (Lyons, Chamber, Foundation, Trail Assoc., Museum, Norfolk County, the list goes on) on the Board then no one is against you.
A year ago it was a dream. Now they have Charitable status, a blueprint and fundraising plan. The Museum said we have land beside us. You can put the park there. The County will put up $200,000 if the group can fund raise $300,000. $70,000 is already being held in trust.
"Keep them occupied" , the kids are involved every step of the way. To understand the cost and design have a look at the Skate Park in Port Dover. It begins with a very large concrete pad and sculpted features and a pump track (a rider can keep moving continuously up and down rolling features of the track - sessioning again and again with friends - a good workout.
As we can see sports cost money. The park is free. However, the kids are participate in conception of the idea, design and fundraising. The next fundraiser is August 19th at Whistling gardens.
If you take youth seriously they will take care of the park/projects. "I'm proud of you" - just saying that is enough!