Temporary skate park lands in Trail this weekend

The wheels are turning for local skateboarders who will take turns grinding miniature ramps Saturday, kickstarting the Kootenay Skateboard Series.

A temporary street-style skateboard course will be set up in the Cominco Arena’s parking lot Saturday from noon until 3p.m., giving teens a taste of what it will be like to have their very own wheel park in the near future.

“It will get kids reinvigorated with the whole skate park issue, it’s been kind of a long haul for them,” said River Jones, coordinator for Columbia Youth Community Development Centre in Trail.

Along with Ashley Escott, who originally petitioned the area two years ago to find out whether Trail had an appetite for a skate park, teens James Kearney and Aryelle Attridge-Weeks will be out selling snacks, drinks and “Skate 4 the Park” T-shirts to raise funds for Trail’s future park.

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The city recently dedicated $25,000 toward the design of a park, which will be built on the city’s undeveloped land in the Gulch.

Trail is the newest community to join the Kootenay Skateboard Series, which is now in its second year running and is put on by B.C. Skateboarding, which is inspired to showcase skateboarders in the province and their scene.

“As the skateboarders come together they have the opportunity to meet others and share the spirit of the activity,” said Ty Smith, cofounder of bcskateboarding.org. “In doing this non-skateboarders can begin to appreciate what it means for these riders to be passionate about their activity.”

Led by the Black Russian professional skate team, skateboarders will have the opportunity to observe talented boarders and perhaps share some insight with those new to the sport.

Participants competing in the under-14 division, 15 and over and women category will be judged on speed, style and tricks.

“These kids have to be brave, they’re tough and technical. And just as driven and willing with anything, they have to sustain through the bumps and bruises,” said Jones.

The mixed martial arts fighter understands why people may have the wrong impression of the alternative sport but hopes an event like this can diminish any false pretenses.

“Not all sports are accessible to kids – they’re expensive and take a lot of time – people don’t always fit into those niches or stereotypes and I think any sport that isn’t necessarily mainstream, is serving a need.”

After Trail starts off the Kootenay Skateboard Series, other participating communities like Rossland and Castlegar will host a similar event.

More information can be found at http://bcskateboarding.org