Park and Ride.

A Revamped, Fully Upgraded Action Park In Grand Prairie Will Start To Unveil Itself On Saturday At The Spot’s 10-Year Anniversary Party.

All photos by Jonathan Zizzo.

It’s almost 2017, and Dallas still doesn’t have a decent public skate park within city limits. Pretty lame, Dallas!

In this instance — and maybe this instance only! — the suburbs are just honestly way better at holding things down. Really, there are some great action sports parks around the region, and perhaps none greater than Action Park in Grand Prairie (1002 Lone Star Parkway), which will celebrate its 10th anniversary under the management of the Action Park Alliance team with a party this Saturday, December 17.

More than just an anniversary celebration, though, Saturday’s event will also serve as a soft grand opening for the park’s many recent updates and expansions. Here’s a rundown of the park’s new upgrades:

  • The Hangar. Action Park’s covered course now features an updated street course, a bowl and a foam pit for high-flying trick practicing. For special events, this portion of the park will also boast a zip line, along with other activities specifically built for team-building exercises.
  • Outdoor course updates. The outdoor course has been cleaned up and upgraded with additional ramps and rails, along with new layouts.
  • New bike courses and trails. A whole two acres of land at the park are now dedicated to outdoor bike activities for all skill levels, from kids  and adults just trying the sport out for the firs time to beginners to pros. Also new? A jump trail system, a pump track and a starting gate, which will be utilized as part of a new head to head, nontraditional series the park will be hosting.
  • An open-air fitness pavilion. This new 2,000-square-foot, “gladiator-style” gymnasium will boast an on-site trainer for people looking to engage in excercises beyond action sports activities, and is at least in part specifically aimed at parents who are looking to work out while their children are out biking or skating on the courses.
  • Permanent concert stage. Action Park has been increasingly adding music to its programming of late, but as part of an initiative to open up Action Park to a wider audience, a permanent stage has been installed on the grounds to make hosting more shows a more feasible goal.
  • New concessions. The kitchen has been updated to accommodate a wider array of food options, most notably through the addition of a pizza oven.

These changes to the park, Action Park Alliance executive director Mark Laue explains, are more than just superficial upgrades; they’re representative of a new direction for the park and for his company, which builds and manages parks all over the country. With the Grand Prairie park serving as something of a flagship for the brand, Laue hopes the facility’s new features will help the park trend into a new, “action-sport-as-fitness” direction, particularly through the addition of the bike courses and the open-air gym.

“That’s my goal,” Laue says. “We want to develop that niche. The way fitness is trending these days is already toward the extreme, and while not everyone can ride a skateboard, almost anyone can ride a bike.”

It’s an exciting new direction for the Action Park Alliance, which took over the facility, formerly known as GPX, in 2006. Already, the group has proven itself capable of successfully operating within the construct of a private-public partnership (the City of Grand Prairie owns the property, but Action Park Alliance handles all operations and costs invilved in that); now, the company is focusing on introducing larger audiences to its facility’s offerings.

“Our goal,” Laue says, “is to have a facility that all walks of life can enjoy.”

Attendees of Saturday’s anniversary bash — which runs fron noon to 6 p.m., costs $10 to attend, will feature various competitions and will also include autograph sessions with skating icons Mike McGill and Eddie Elguera — will get an early look at these new developments, although Laue is quick to point out that some changes to the park are still underway. A formal grand opening of the new facility, he says, will take place in March.

In the meantime, check out the above pictures of the improved space, as well as the below video preview shot by the Action Park Alliance team themselves.

Place looks pretty sweet, gotta say.

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