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Opening for The Waypoint now planned for March 1

The community volunteers who stepped up to turn an entryway eyesore into a new public promenade are getting ready for the dedication ceremony for The Waypoint.

The Waypoint, the gateway park at the corner of Winslow Way and Olympic Drive, will be officially dedicated at 11:20 a.m. Friday, March 1.

Volunteers have transformed the polluted site of a former gas station into an entryway attraction with benches and a landscaped public walkway. The property is owned by the city of Bainbridge Island and Kitsap Transit, and the upcoming ceremony will mark the official transfer of maintenance and administration of The Waypoint to the Bainbridge Island Metro Parks and Recreation.

“The Waypoint will be replacing what has been a very unattractive property with a beautiful and welcoming public space for everyone visiting Bainbridge Island,” said Steve Davis, co-leader of The Waypoint Project Citizen’s Task Force.

The project was funded through donations by corporate and private donations and community grants. The significant outpouring of citizen support and volunteer involvement included help from Jones and Jones, PHC, subcontractors, environmentalists, the Rotary Club of Bainbridge Island and a variety of community organizations through the donation of fee waivers, volunteer hours and leadership.

“The focus of the Waypoint project is the spirit of welcome and the natural beauty of our Bainbridge Island community. It will have a lovely, simple design that allows a moment of pause among daily comings and goings on the Island,” said Johnpaul Jones, architect for the park project.

“The Waypoint would be a fitting way to welcome ‘walk on’ visitors to Winslow and our Island,” added longtime island resident Frank Kitomoto.

The opening ceremony had originally been planned for mid-February. Organizers said the timing of the short ceremony on March 1, at 11:20 a.m., was necessary to avoid noise from ferry traffic.

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