New crowdfunding campaign to support transformation of Detroit’s vacant Wigle Recreation Center into a community skatepark

Nate Pilon

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

$20,000 crowdfunding goal to win MEDC matching grant

LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan Economic Development Corporation and Detroit-based Community Push today announced the launch of a new crowdfunding campaign through Michigan crowdfunding platform Patronicity as part of the MEDC Public Spaces Community Places initiative. The campaign will support phase two of “The Wig,” a community-led project to transform the vacant and blighted Wigle Recreation Center in Midtown into a new skatepark. 

“The work of organizations like Community Push and projects like “The Wig” are excellent examples of how we can leverage community pride and work together to create strong neighborhoods and a high quality of life for residents,” said MEDC President and CEO Michael A. Finney. “Crowdfunding is great tool to get people engaged in activating public spaces, and we are proud to be a partner in this effort.” 

Located at 801 Seldon St., the once vibrant Wigle Recreation Center has sat vacant since 2005. This past summer, Community Push, an organization started by skateboarders to bridge the gap between skateboarding and the community, officially adopted the center’s park from the Detroit Parks and Recreation Department to build a community skatepark. 

Community Push completed the project’s first phase in September creating a destination for area youth. 

With the foundation for a great skatepark in place, phase two will involve expansion elements, including new skateboarding obstacles (concrete and steel), artistic beautification, public seating, and programs to introduce youth and students at surrounding schools to skateboarding and the social benefits it brings – civic participation, health and wellness, cultural creativity, risk-taking and supportive community building. 

If Community Push attains its crowdfunding goal of $20,000 by December 13, MEDC will provide a $20,000 matching grant. To donate, please go to:

“This project has been a dream to work on,” said Community Push’s Derrick Dykas. “I feel very fortunate to be able to take the tools I’ve acquired as a skateboarder, tradesmen and organizer and use them to give back. What's been accomplished so far has sparked a fire in the community that'll burn for years to come, and it's exciting to see what comes next.”

Public Spaces Community Places is a collaborative effort of the MEDC, the Michigan Municipal League, and Patronicity where local residents can use crowdfunding to be part of the development of transformational projects in their communities and be backed with a matching grant from MEDC. Communities, non-profits and other business entities can apply at

About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at Join the conversation on: Facebook Instagram LinkedIn, and Twitter.