Foussat Road & Alex Road, Oceanside
Despite humid temperatures in the 90s, on August 30, hundreds of skateboarders and their families showed up for the opening of a new million-dollar skate park in Oceanside.
The Alex Road Skate Park, located on Alex Road (near the old drive-in theaters), offers 22,600 square feet of fresh concrete, pool coping, banks, rails, ledges, two bowls, and two “snake runs.”
Skydivers from Oceanside Airport’s Tsunami Skydiving Team kicked off the festivities. As they fell out of the sky, mayor Jim Wood, councilpersons, city staff, and local skaters cut the ribbon. Local skate and food companies gave away stickers and held a free raffle for new boards, helmets, gear, and videos. Almost every kid walked away with some new gear. Over 25 new helmets were given away.
Parks and Recreation manager Eileen Turk, organizer of the event, let everyone know that while the rules regarding wearing of helmets were relaxed on opening day, beginning August 31 the helmet law would be strictly enforced.
Experienced skaters passed out stickers and cautioned other skaters not to tag their new park — stickers belong on boards and helmets, they told kids.
The city’s skate-park-project manager, Nathan Mertz, previously said the park “will be the envy of skaters throughout Southern California.” Mertz is known in the city as a former shredder; he designed the park in a fashion that would help beginners improve their skills and enable the pros to show off.
Located next to the San Luis Rey River and the city’s 7.5-mile river bike path, the state Land and Water Conservation Fund paid for almost half the project’s cost. The Tony Hawk Foundation kicked in $25,000, and the rest came from developer fees. Construction started in January and was completed a month ahead of schedule.
Alex Road is the city’s fifth skate park. Two more skate parks are planned in the long range for Oceanside: one in the former sand mine known as the El Corazon Project, and one in the downtown area.