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City’s Skate Park A Needed Respite
In addition to skateboards, some patrons of the Riverbank Skate Park utilize push scooters, and sometimes even bicycles to have their fun, like those at the park over the weekend. The sunny, mild weather was just right for hitting the ramps, curls and jumps the facility offers. Ric McGinnis/The News

The weather lately in Riverbank has reminded many of spring, not winter, with a few folks finding refuge from the COVID lockdown by spending an afternoon or two at the Skate Park.

One of many park installations throughout Riverbank, it’s located at the corner of Santa Fe and First streets, and is actually built on a portion of what was Staley Park, the remainder of which stretches south from the edge of  the facility. Staley Park was named after a former Riverbank Judge and Realtor.

At the time, just an odd-shaped patch of dirt and weeds, the Skate Park portion saw groundbreaking in 2003, overseen by then-mayor Bill O’Brien and a group of teenaged enthusiasts who helped with size, function and design of the facility. The remaining park area was then landscaped, with shade trees and lush grass, along with a few benches.

Though intended for just skateboards, the Skate Park sees plenty of use by people using two-wheeled push scooters and even bicycles of different sizes. The park features picnic-style tables and a bleacher area, for those who come just to watch.

The Skate Park, as well as Staley Park, are part of the widespread system of parks ranging across the City of Riverbank, maintained and operated by the Parks and Recreation Department.