Local youth get together at the rec center Monday evening to turn their ideas that were once on paper into models. The plan, according to recreation director Gary Scott, is to have the youth plan exactly what they want for their park to contain.
Daily Leader photo/Jessica Crawford
By JESSICA CRAWFORD
• Daily Leader
Not only does recreation director Gary Scott have local youth pumped up about the idea of the new skate park to be built in Light Park, he has them 100 percent involved in the construction process.
Scott met with local young men again Monday evening whose hobby is the core reason for the building of a new skate park.
Two weeks ago, they met to put their ideas on paper, last night they met to build models of their ideas.
“Basically our plan tonight was to get their ideas down on paper – which they did, they came back with ideas,” Scott said. “We wanted to take those ideas and try to make a model.”
The bi-monthly meetings Scott is conducting have become about much more than the finished product of the new park which will be part of the Light Park improvement project. It has become a time for the young men to get together with a common goal and give them something to look forward to.
The models built by the youth involved in the process, along with those built by the adults involved in the committee formed 10 years ago, will eventually be placed on a platform to be handed to a construction company.
“With those models, we are going to place them on a skate park and, eventually, have some fun with that,” Scott said. “We are just having fun right now and keeping their interest. They have a lot of ideas and a lot of times this is a way of getting those ideas down to understand what they really want.”
Scott announced at the meeting that the proposed budget for the project is $60,000. Although that is a nice sum for the kids to work with, more funds are likely to be needed for them to achieve the caliber of quality they would like to have.
Mayor Joe Denoyer has also been involved in the process. His suggestion to the young men was to possibly have a show or competition with youth in the surrounding area in order to raise more funds for the project.
Denoyer encouraged the kids to use their talents on a skateboard or roller blades to get the community excited and involved with what is happening.
“A lot of people don’t really realize what it takes to do what you do,” Denoyer said. “They think a lot of you are just a bunch of bad kids out there causing trouble.
“For a fund-raiser, what I would like to see is a skate day at the park,” he explained. “You could probably go up to Ulysses and Garden City and get those kids down here, too, and just show the people what you can do. Just have maybe a competition of some sort, maybe a fund- raiser where you sell hot dogs, hamburgers and just do the ramps, rails and things like that.”
Denoyer suggested the former committee involved in the construction of the skate park in Mary Frame Park, who are now adults, get involved as well.
“Get these old guys out of retirement,” Denoyer said. “I think that would be a good way to show the community that you are serious about this and this is what you want.
“You guys are good at it,” he added. “Put on a show for the community.”
Denoyer also noted that individuals or businesses interested in donating to the construction of the park make the donations to the city so they can be placed into the account set aside for the skate park.
According to Scott, the next scheduled meeting will be at 7 p.m.
Monday, Dec. 1, at the rec center.