Cartwright Pump Track sets opening celebration

07/11/2016  

By Sue Cody

 

Pump Track 1Mountain bikers, rejoice! There is a new pump track for bicycle enthusiasts near Seaside’s Cartwright Park.

 

An opening day celebration is planned from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, July 16. Food and soft drinks are being donated by local businesses.

 

“Years ago, Cartwright Park was just a bunch of blackberries and a phone booth where people made their deals,” said Seaside Mayor Don Larson.

 

Now, the new pump track is adjacent to the park, which already has a picnic shelter, swing sets, restrooms and play structures. “The pump track is a real neat addition,” Larson said.

 

A pump track is a looping bike track with bumps and berms where bikers can “pump” their body up and down, creating momentum without pedaling over the bumps.

 

“Pump tracks are gathering places for the community,” said Chris Quackenbush, a North Coast Trail Alliance (NCTA) member. “Riding the track gets kids and adults off their phones and computers for great exercise outdoors.”

 

Pump track 11In the beginning

 

Getting the community onto bikes was the goal, said Morgan Soller, one of the driving members of the NCTA.

 

“We came up with a location that we thought would accommodate a bike track on city property,” said Quackenbush. The location is next to Cartwright Park, behind the Seaside School District Administration Building, and easily accessible by bicycle. Quackenbush said the track would be an improvement on the unsightly space near the park that was simply flat ground breeding invasive species

 

After developing a basic track design for the space, NCTA approached the Seaside Parks Advisory Committee with the idea.

 

Seaside Public Works Director Dale McDowell was impressed with their efforts. “The presentation featured members from ages 7 to 70, who explained to the board with photographs and concept drawings how they would like to develop the space.”

 

After talking to Kiwanis, which has adopted Cartwright Park, there was work to be done. After a neighborhood survey, redesigns and more presentations to Seaside’s Planning Commission and the City Council, the project was approved at the end of April.

 

“The Seaside City Council is pleased to see this group of men doing something upbeat for their kids, families and visitors,” Larson said.

 

Pump Track 3Let the work begin

 

Brush clearing, rock loading, sifting through materials to pack into the curved surface of the track was all accomplished by NCTA and community volunteers, who also spent many hours building, packing and refining the track.

 

“Moving tons of rock by hand was back-breaking,” Soller said.

 

Materials and supplies were donated by All Rents, Keith Keranen Excavating, Teevin & Fischer Quarry, Erickson Excavating, Osburn/Olson LLC, Angelina’s Pizza, Seaside Coffee House, Fairweather Press, TerraCom Web Design and Subway. Northwest Coast Trails Coalition (NCTC) donated funds for the sign.

 

Pump track 10Benefits

 

McDowell said he likes the idea of families participating in outdoor activities together. “More experienced riders can teach younger riders how to ride the track, bringing the community and neighbors together.

 

“I have witnessed firsthand the use of the pump track, especially young children on their bicycles. They are having a blast. I feel this is a great asset to our park system and to our community.”