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Skate Park grand opening is June 29

It's finally here.

After years of interest and months of planning, a new skate park at Sunnyview Park will be unveiled this Thursday during a grand opening celebration from 1 to 3 p.m.

The city of Sunnyside, which put up more than $100,000 for the park-with $51,000 of that funded through a state grant-has been planning the skate park for the past four months.

That included a meeting with local skateboarders in May regarding design and elements for the park.

Before that, 2005 Sunnyside High School grad Daniel Mendoza spent six years raising funds and awareness of the city's need for a skate park.

The hundreds of hours he spent on the effort garnered Mendoza, who attends Ohio State University, gold, silver and bronze Congressional awards.

But awards were not Mendoza's aim when he started lobbying for a skate park.

"I've always been willing to help others and I learned that through scouting," Mendoza said not long after earning his Eagle Scout award this past winter. "When someone asks me to do something I have a hard time saying no. After that I become determined to not quit and see it through."

With help from the city of Sunnyside, the skate park project has indeed become reality.

As part of Thursday's grand opening celebration, prizes will be distributed, such as helmets, t-shirts and a skateboard.

The festivities will also feature an appearance by professional skateboarder Dorian Tucker, who via speaker phone worked with the local skating community to design the skate park.

Sunnyview Park, the site of the skate park, is located at Yakima Valley Highway and East Alexander Road.

For more information, contact the city of Sunnyside Public Works Department at 837-5206.

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