KETCHUM, IDAHO – Ketchum Mayor Nina Jonas is encouraging all skateboarders and supporters of the Guy Coles Skatepark to join in the celebration of the new terrain and features at the popular downtown park.
A project to expand and enhance the 22-year-old park began in September, culminating months of planning and fundraising. The city and the Ketchum Arts Commission also contracted with an artist to create a variety of public art pieces as part of its “Percent for Art” project.
Mayor Jonas will join other city officials in re-opening the park on Oct. 27 at 4:30 p.m.
“The Guy Coles Skatepark has been a fixture of our downtown and community for more than two decades,” Jonas said. “This expansion takes the park to the next level and adds yet another gem to our expanding and improving collection of public parks and recreational facilities.”
The city council approved this summer spending more than $127,000 to hire Dreamland Skateparks LLC to design, engineer and build the addition. In the last two months, crews have added a series of new features, including rails, elevated ramps and additional area to existing bowls.
The city authorized spending $80,000, which includes $40,000 from the Ketchum Urban Renewal Agency. The Guy Coles Skate Park Trust Fund, the city’s Parks and Recreation Miscellaneous Donations Trust Fund and local fundraisers kicked in additional resources to the project.
The reopening will also highlight the contribution by local artist Molly Snee, whose painting on an obelisk depicts the history of skateboarding dating back to the 1970s. Her work also includes painting of curbs and rails and an old Ketchum fire hydrant.
The public art was made possible thanks to the “Percent for Art” Ordinance, adopted in 2011. The ordinance calls for dedicating 1.33 percent of the cost of public works projects – within certain specifications and limitations – to be dedicated to public art displays. The ordinance was updated in 2014 to allow for an increase of 5 percent of the cost of a city capital project for public art.
The skatepark was built in 1995 then expanded to include two concrete bowls in 2005.
About the City of Ketchum
The city of Ketchum is located in the Wood River Valley in south central Idaho. Founded in 1880 during the mining boom, Ketchum is now regarded as one of the most popular destinations for winter and summer visitors due to its world-class skiing, mountain biking, fishing, hiking, restaurants, art galleries and shopping. The city of Ketchum hosts the famous annual Wagon Days Parade, held on Labor Day weekend, and numerous other year-round attractions. Ketchum is home to more than 10,000 full- and part-time residents. For more information about the city of Ketchum, visit ketchumidaho.org.