Speak Up on SK Park

The scene Wednesday at Kitsap County’s first public meeting on the South Kitsap Community Park master plan looked more like a poker game than a public process. Participants were invited to place chips representing features and amenities, current and potential, on a map of the park.

As mentioned in the Kitsap Sun, the meeting was one of three interactive events that will take place between now and December, when the Kitsap County Board of Commissioners will vote on the plan that will guide the future of the beloved park through the next decade and maybe beyond. The next meeting is July 16.

Some groups with special interest in the park, such South Kitsap Skate Park Association and Fields Today, Fit Tomorrow, have caught the county’s attention through high levels of organization, said Chip Faver, the Kitsap County Parks and Recretion. But the county is also trying to reach out to people, especially seniors, who would enjoy using the park but may not be able to attend meetings.

Ultimately, said Faver, the county must balance the many, sometimes competing interests of those who would use the park.
“It’s government’s responsibility to speak for those who can’t speak up,” said Faver. “But in all instances, it’s government’s responsibility to speak up for those who will.”

Faver obviously wants to whip up enthusiasm for the planning process. Shouting like a preacher in a pulpit or a coach before the big game, he got the 200+ folks in attendance to “repeat after me,” “I’m in … I’m in it for the long haul … and I’m going to make that happen!” Faver even offered a bounty of $10,000 for every new participant brought to the next meeting. (He was “just joking.” What a card.)

For more information or to comment on the park master plan, visit www.skpark.org (http://www.skpark.org), call toll free (877) 292-6412, or write Kitsap County Parks and Recreation, 1200 NW Fairgrounds Road, Bremerton, WA 98311.

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