Skateboarders Will Flip Over the Brand-New Skatepark

On Wednesday, May 4, 2011 - 16:46

It will have a quarter pipe, half pipe, kick box ramp, rails, a pyramid and a side transfer. Kids will be able to exe­cute ollies, kickflips, 50-50s and fakies. Pardon? Most people who hear those terms have no idea what they mean. However, the message is loud and clear to skateboarders. A $50,000 Sikeston Skatepark will open in April 2008 in the Sikeston Sports Complex, specifically at the corner of Campanella Drive and Stephenson Road. The city has donated the land where a 50-by-80 concrete skate pad is now situated, while a volunteer community group called the Sikeston Skatepark Committee has raised all of the money needed for equipment. “The city also helped us with removing all the dirt and putting down gravel prior to us purchasing the con­crete for the large skate pad,” says Cindy Taylor, founder and president of the Sikeston Skatepark Committee. “The committee’s original plan was to have about five pieces of equipment in the new park. However, the public has been so good about donating money that we will be able to have a well-equipped, state-of-the-art skatepark in place by springtime.” The equipment has already been purchased from Joplin, Mo.-based American Ramp Company, one of the nation’s leaders in skatepark construction. “My 12-year-old son, Aubrey, is a skateboarder who says the pipes, rails, ramps and other equipment from American Ramp are really cool stuff,” Taylor says. “The Sikeston park will have rules and regulations posted, and the city will maintain the property and provide the insurance. There is a stereotype about kids in this sport being real daredevils, but almost all of them are actually pretty cautious. They are good about wearing safety equipment.” Taylor says sentiment of need for such a facility began escalating a couple of years ago because there are now more than 150 avid skateboarders in town. “These kids are skating on business properties, streets and sidewalks, so my son asked me if I would help get a park started here in Sikeston,” Taylor says. “I actually quit my job to devote all my energies to making this facility a reality for my son and all the boarders here in town.” Taylor says she and her friend, Cheryl Brown, created several presentations and approached many area businesses for contributions. “Many of the businesses and several individuals have helped us so, as a result, the concrete for the skatepad was poured in November 2007,” Taylor says. “The equipment was ordered a few weeks later. It has been an exhausting experience, but well worthwhile.”