By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Skate Park Takes Center Stage
Placeholder Image
With a location now determined and a dedicated group working to make Railtown a reality, the first official fundraiser for Escalon's Skate Park is coming up this weekend.

Musical group Back To Good will perform in a benefit concert for the skate park effort on Saturday night, April 21 starting at 8:30 p.m. at Shorty's Pub and Grill on Plaza Avenue.

"There's no admission, this is free, we just really want to get the word out there," said Escalon Parks Foundation committee member Irene Laugero.

All are invited to attend the concert, with the local musicians performing a variety of "great dance music," said Laugero of their primarily soft rock style.

The site selected for the skate park is on Main Street, near the intersection of Second and Main at the south end of the street, said City Manager Henry Hesling.

"This is the start of fundraising for the Foundation, right now they are raising money to get some plans drawn," Hesling said. "The city has designated the site for the park."

It will cover an area south of the historic caboose to near the old City Hall in the 1800 block of Main when complete, but construction is still a long way off. Laugero said the Parks Foundation is working cooperatively toward the goal of getting money raised, plans in place and construction started. A sign indicating the site as the future home of the city's first skate park was recently completed, which she said will help inform the public about the project.

Among the members of the Back To Good band is Mike Roark, who also serves as the Escalon Parks Foundation president. He will lead his group on Saturday night in the fundraising effort. Laugero said though there is no admission fee, there will be the opportunity for drawings throughout the evening, with proceeds benefiting the skate park effort.

"We're excited to get a location (for the skate park) and now it's all about fundraising," Laugero said. "We estimate we have $400,000 to raise."

Community and corporate donations will be sought, in addition to the Parks Foundation coordinating a number of fundraising activities, including some anticipated at this year's Park Fete celebration in July.

Laugero said the Foundation is committed to bringing 'Railtown' to fruition.

"Our kids aren't allowed to skateboard on sidewalks or at the schools," she said. "So it's either skateboard in the street or go to another town. This is something we need to do for the kids."

Her husband, Jeff Laugero, serves on the city council and she said when he was running for the council, meeting with residents, two things came up routinely: the need for an emphasis on city safety and the need for a skate park.

"I'm just so honored to be a part of this effort," she said, adding that the first fundraiser is being supported by the city, Kevin Lucas and the staff at Shorty's and the community.

"We're just hoping for a great turnout," Laugero said. "It starts at 8:30 p.m. and we'll keep on until we can't dance anymore."