Friday, March 20, 2015

Jimi Hendrix Park To Be Developed In Seattle

Seattle is one step closer to building a long-planned park dedicated to native son Jimi Hendrix. Organizers announced on Thursday that the city is working with ERRG, Inc. to build the 2.5-acre Jimi Hendrix Park, located in Seattle's Central District, adjacent to the Northwest African American Museum. Construction is expected to begin in April, with phase one projected to open this fall.

The park, which is four years in the making, went from idea to reality thanks to non-profit groups Jimi Hendrix Park Foundation and the Friends of Jimi Hendrix Park, who since 2012 have raised more than $1.4 million to finance the project.

"It is our hope that for generations, [the park] will exist as more than an attraction or point of interest, but a place of homage to one of Seattle's own," said Janie Hendrix, the rocker's sister and director of the Jimi Hendrix Park Foundation. "The landscaping, the artistic design, and the ambience all mimic the vibe of the persona of Jimi, whom this park honors."

Phase one of the park -- dubbed "Little Wing" -- will include an entrance at 25th and Massachusetts, a pathway with a timeline of the artist's life and career, rain infiltration gardens and a central plaza for performances, among other features. Phase two, which is still in the fundraising stages, will add the park's centerpiece, a so-called "shadow wave wall" depicting silhouette images of Hendrix.

Major park donors so far include Hard Rock International, KISW 99.9 FM, Nisqually Indian Tribe and Fender Musical Instruments Co.

Born in Seattle, Hendrix rose to fame in the late 1960s with his innovative blues-rock guitar playing, explosive live performances and classic songs including "Purple Haze," "Foxy Lady" and the Dylan cover "All Along the Watchtower." He died in London on Sept. 18 1970 at age 27.