Woodfin – Hundreds of people turned out to attend the grand opening of Woodfin’s newest park: the Silver-Line Park on Riverside Drive. The $1.5 million park fell behind schedule for completion after the pandemic slowed down supply chains for much of what was needed for its completion, including the park’s centerpiece for the playground: a pirate ship.
Attendees enjoyed this adventurous playground with free hot dogs provided by Dickie’s of Woodfin, bottled water supplied by the former Woodfin Town Administrator Eric Hardy and Pelican Ice. While supplies lasted, people also received Woodfin Park’s T-shirts and caps.
The Woodfin Fire Department’s trucks were on display, and the Craggy Mountain Line brought its iconic trolley down, parking it at the Silver-Line Park’s new train platform.
As an official gesture, Woodfin Town Manager Shannon Tuch spoke to the crowd from the train platform, thanking all those that worked so hard to make the park a reality. “For those of you who may not be aware, the Silver-Line Park is really just one piece of a larger park project known as the Woodfin Greenway & Blueway,” she announced to the crowd. She went on to say that she envisions these parks to be “…regional assets connecting and engaging the town of Woodfin to the rest of our Western North Carolina community.”
After Tuch introduced elected officials and the Silver-Line Park team, she handed over the microphone to the next speaker: Woodfin Mayor Jerry VeHaun. “You know this has been a long time coming, and without this first group I am going to be introducing, it would not have been possible at all.” VeHaun introduced Charles Silver, an attendee whose family started Silver-Line Plastic and donated the land for the park. “So Charles, to you and your family, thank you!”
He then moved on to thank others, including the Woodfin voters who passed the bond referendum, making this first step possible, he told the throng. “We also have a lot more work to do, and that means raising more money, and so we are grateful for the partnership with RiverLink.” RiverLink has been tapped to help raise millions more for completiong the greenway/blueway project.
He then took a moment for recognizing former Woodfin Town Administrator Jason Young, who died in 2020 after a long battle with cancer. “Jason was very instrumental in this park and what is in it, and in his vision in the greenway, and the other parks along the river that you’re going to see in years to come. Jason could see this park even when others of us had our doubts, and played an important role in putting this whole thing in motion. He never stopped thinking about it, dreaming about it, talking about it, and this, today, is the result of some of his dreams.”
VeHaun concluded with additional thanks to the Young family. They were present at the event and asked Jason’s wife, Johanna, to come forward and unveil a plaque that will be attached to the playground’s centerpiece pirate ship. This sea-faring fixture was pronounced as SS Jason Young. “So that others might know what he meant to us and to this park.”
Buncombe County Commissioner Terri Wells proceeded to make a few additional remarks. She said she was excited about this new community asset which will not only benefit Woodfin but our great community. “It is invaluable for people to have places to play, relax and stay connected to our natural world.” She went on to talk about the county being a partner in the greenway and about the many other partners needed to complete the project’s full vision.
Some of the park’s other features are a pavilion, a train platform for riding the Craggy Mountain Line, a swing overlooking the river, a boat launch, and walking trails.