How do you choose, from three inspiring designs, the license plate to best portray the beauty of Rocky Point yet capture a feeling of its legacy as a playground for so many generations?
The Rocky Point Foundation was presented that quandary when it narrowed down more than a dozen designs drawn by Warwick Area Career and Technical Center graphics arts students to three possibilities. The foundation turned to the public to pick their favorite in an online poll. That seemed the best way to settle it.
But the poll raised yet more possibilities.
More than 3,500 people cast ballots with all three designs gaining more than 800 votes. The foundation also received comments on what people liked and didn’t care for. While a preponderance of people favored the sunrise scene with the Jamestown Bridge on the horizon, the work of Anthony Lescarbeau of West Warwick High School, there were those who preferred the arch as depicted by Skye Whelpley of West Warwick High School. And still, others liked the seagulls in the design created by Meaghan Marcus of Toll Gate High School.
Instructor Jann Rogers Gartner saw no reason why the work of the three students couldn’t be combined. Before the center closed for summer vacation, the students cooperatively worked on a design incorporating elements of each of their work.
Before the design was finalized, it was sent to the Department of Motor Vehicles to ensure it met specifications.
On Tuesday, under the hot sun in the Warwick Area Career and Technical Center parking lot, a giant version of the plate was unveiled to the news media. Pre-orders for the plate can be made online at Rockypointplate.com.
Warwick Representative Joseph Solomon Jr., who introduced legislation for the plate, talked of the many memories Rhode Islanders have of Rocky Point and how funds raised by plate orders will help the foundation enhance the park.
Mayor Scott Avedisian applauded the cooperative efforts of the community to save the park and those of the students and the center to design the plate. He talked of park improvements and how the painting of the Skyliner stanchions could be the next improvement.
For the plate to be produced the foundation must gain 900 pre-paid orders at $41.50 each. Of that amount, $20 will go to the foundation.
Once that threshold has been met, the initial 900 plates will be manufactured and distributed at an event as well as from one or more locations to be announced. Should 900 orders not be placed by March of next year, payments will be refunded and there won’t be a Rocky Point plate.
With such love for Rocky Point that seems an unlikely outcome.
More than 800 people registered as Friends of Rocky Point during the online poll. The friends will all receive email notification that plates can be ordered along with a link to the website where they can place their order. Only online orders and payments are being accepted. Pre-orders of the plate will also be promoted at local events and on various websites including that of the Warwick Beacon and the Central Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce.
The foundation will use its proceeds for park projects with one of the first being the purchase of paint and materials to repaint the Skyliner stanchions that, along with the swing tower, arch and remnants of the observation tower were saved when the former amusement park was leveled. The foundation has also been supportive of the Movies in the Park series and 5K road race and walk initiated by the Central Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce.
Plate orders can be placed by going to the website: Rockypointplate.com