The countdown has begun, for the opening of the Alix Rice Peace Park. The skate park has been designed as safe place for people to skate, without being harassed. The park’s official opening date has been announced – a ribbon cutting will be held on Saturday, August 4, 2018, with a celebration from noon to 3 pm. During that time, there will be skating demonstrations, food trucks, live music, and raffles (at the Northtown Center).
The skate park is being made possible thanks to the efforts of the Alix Rice Peace Park Foundation (ARPPF), with funding from the State of New York, the Tony Hawk Foundation, among others. The members of the community are invited to purchase a brick with his or her name on it, simply by filling out a donation form at AlixRice.com. As an added incentive, the Sabres are donating four pre-season games tickets for every brick purchased (tickets are subject to availability).
In the end, this tribute skate park is an ongoing reminder of the importance of a single life that was taken from us too soon. In July 2011, 18-year-old Alix Rice was killed by a drunk driver, as she was riding her longboard home from work. This skate park will be a legacy reminder that will bring joy to countless skaters who will always have a connection to Alix, by simply enjoying the various aspects of the park.
“When your child dies, you have to learn how to live again,” said Alix’s mother, Tammy Schueler, who is also a board member of ARPPF. “For me, I had to learn how to be a mom without my child. When I was asked to help create a skatepark in my daughter’s memory, I thought, yes, Alix deserves it. She sure didn’t get the justice that she deserved, but we can build her a beautiful skatepark. My forever friends on the board, (Jon Fulcher, Fran Knab, Steve Federico and Brian Duff) dove into a project unlike anything any of us had ever thought of before. Looking back, we had no idea what we were getting into and I am glad we didn’t. We can now see that more than six years of hard work and ups and downs has reached the payoff. This is an exciting day in WNY history as we open this one-of-a-kind skatepark in memory of a one-of-a-kind person. Alix’s skatepark is my happy ending that every story needs.”