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‘A lot of opportunity’ to upgrade Shastice Park: pool is often requested addition

Kelsey Shelton
Mount Shasta Herald
Mount Shasta's Shastice Park is often used for outdoor concerts, like this one in the summer of 2019.

The Mount Shasta Recreation and Parks District continued a set of public input meetings on Sept. 12 about local parks, this time concentrating on Shastice.

The park, which features an open air ice rink, a skate park, two open fields, tennis courts, a dog park and a playground is being considered for updates and changes, according to MSRPD Administrator Shannon Shaw. 

Local architectural engineer Tom Hesseldenz, who is assisting with the updates, gave a presentation about what’s currently offered at the park, and offered suggestions for new features and structures. 

According to Hesseldenz, projects still ongoing or under consideration are the potential addition of a roof for the ice rink, a proposed pool facility,  potential biking areas, and locker and equipment storage facilities for the ice rink.

The entrance to Shastice Park in Mount Shasta.

During the public input portion of the meeting, several speakers said they support the concept of adding a pool to the park. 

Jen Carr, coach of the South Siskiyou Swim Team, said her swimmers currently use the Bel Air Pool in Weed to practice and host meets. 

“The season is super short because it is an outdoor pool, and is weather dependent,” said Carr. “The community clearly wants this for their kids ... a pool can benefit any demographic in our area.”

But, Carr admitted, “a pool is a very expensive thing to build.”

Other residents were in favor of installing a more inclusive playground area, which could offer equipment and activities for children with physical and mental disabilities, as well as those with sensory needs. 

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Mount Shasta High School student Emma Carpenter suggested using the existing tennis courts to create a basketball court, where students could be free to use and practice the sport. 

“I see them as unused and as wasted potential,” said Carpenter. A basketball court would be “easier to maintain, and a lot of students would really appreciate it.”

The tennis courts, according to Hesseldenz, “are in terrible shape,” due to drainage issues. In order to make the courts usable for any type of activity, there would need to be a new drainage system and surface repair, due to weathering and large cracks. 

Carpenter also noted that a pool would open up the potential for the formation of a high school swim team, especially if the facility could be used year-round.

“There’s a lot of opportunities in this park,” said Hessledenz. Changes will be determined through survey data, as well as public input through the series of meetings. 

Survey results will be analyzed and decisions will be discussed further, according to MSRPD board member Renee Casterline.

Much like the one prepared for the Mount Shasta City Park, a community input survey is now available on the MSRPD’s website at https://www.msrec.org/.