BOSTON

Park Honoring 8-Year-Old Killed in Marathon Bombings Opens in Boston

The park officially opens Saturday with a ceremony scheduled to begin at 11 a.m.

A new park honoring the youngest victim of the Boston Marathon bombings opens in the Seaport District on Saturday.

Martin's Park, located at the Smith Family Waterfront, honors 8-year-old Martin Richard, of Dorchester, who was killed in the 2013 bombing.

The park officially opened Saturday with a ceremony that began at 11 a.m.

The Richard family, Gov. Charlie Baker and Mayor Marty Walsh were in attendance, as well as hundreds of people from the community. 

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The festivities will include family entertainment, food trucks and activities throughout the day.

Richard's brother and sister are in a band together that will be performing. His brother, Henry, reflected on the importance of the day.

"It's very meaningful because this park is a very meaningful representation of the message of inclusion and peace, and it's a great opportunity to play here. It'll be a very nice day."

The $15 million park took two years to build and is adjacent to the Boston Children's Museum. It features a reflection and water play garden, an amphitheater, a ship and a cosmo climber, which was Richard's favorite.

John McKay worked tirelessly with his team to construct the ship, amphitheater and play garden that fill this one-of-a-kind park.

"We were lucky enough to be selected to build it," he said. "This isn't a typical park. There's nature, play elements of all different kinds. I think the uniqueness really speaks out and obviously the meaning. Martin Richard says it all right there. I think that's what separates it from everything else."

Walsh said Friday that a lot of thoughtfulness has been put into the park.

"It's a beautiful park. We watched it come together. The workers who worked on that park treated it as if it was their own backyard. There's a lot of special attention and care to that park."

And while it will be a day of honoring and celebrating Richard, Walsh says it will also be a tough day for his family and the community as they remember Richard.

"It's going to be a very special day. It's going to be very emotional for the Richard family, and emotional for a lot of people," Walsh said.

The park will be maintained through an endowment of the Friends of Martin's Park and will feature ongoing, no-cost programming.

Martin was one of three people killed when two bombs exploded at the finish line. His younger sister, Jane, lost a leg.

After the bombing, a widely circulated photo showed Martin holding a poster he created with the message, "No more hurting people—peace."

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