Cutino Park

A depiction of the new and improved 6.6-acre Cutino Park, located at San Pablo Avenue and Noche Buena Street. Besides the skate park, facilities include a lighted baseball field with spectator seating, a basketball court, a handball court and a playground.

Seaside’s six-plus-acre Cutino Park has gotten a major multi-million-dollar upgrade, and is set for a grand opening on Saturday Aug. 24. 

They’ve put in the infrastructure, but questions remain for one new feature: How to run a skate park and keep people safe and happy?

With a few weeks to go before opening, Seaside’s Parks and Recreation Department is soliciting public feedback on rules and regulations for the skate park. The first of two open forums was held on Tuesday, July 30. About a dozen residents and a business owner attended, and one young skater attended with his father, as well as one roller skater who claimed to represent a larger potential skate park community. 

City Recreation Director Dan Meewis led the meeting and wanted to know what attendees thought about whether or not the bikes should be allowed, parameters for young unsupervised kids, and the use of bluetooth speakers. One thing Meewis made clear: helmets, knee and elbow pads would all be required per state law.

There was consensus on a number of issues, but some contentious issues concerned the nearby neighbors. Several people worried less about rules and more about noise levels, profanity and trash. One woman who lives across the street says that while the noise of the boards isn’t an issue, she has already been hearing kids swear loudly from the park as they sneak in to use it before it opens. Another local man raised concern with the fact that there is no fence around the park and therefore no way to close it off when needed or keep trash contained.

The lone young skater in the crowd was firm in stating that the skate community will respect the park and keep it clean. He noted that both Monterey and Marina skate parks are well maintained.

Meewis did mention the possibility of security cameras being installed in the future, but was adamant that they would not be monitored live and used only to revisit past events. He said adding any supervision or extra measures like a fence would put the city at increased risk for liability. 

Members of the public can submit feedback for skate park rules and regs online, or attend another forum at noon on Monday, Aug. 5 at BJ Dolan Youth Education and Resource Center, 1136 Wheeler St., Seaside.

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Writer from Seaside interested in the outdoors, ocean sports, photography and the arts.

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