Teenagers flip for new Cordova skate park
by Jennifer Cohron
Aug 11, 2010 | 2358 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Michael Gibbons, Ethan Pylant and Allan Skinner prepare to ride down one of the ramps together at the new Cordova skate park. (Photo by: Jennifer Cohron)
Michael Gibbons, Ethan Pylant and Allan Skinner prepare to ride down one of the ramps together at the new Cordova skate park. (Photo by: Jennifer Cohron)
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Skateboarders in Cordova don't have to practice on Main Street or in parking lots anymore.

Several truckloads of equipment arrived at the old tennis courts on Friday. The Jasper City Council donated the ramps, which have been in storage since the Council closed Jasper's skate park two years ago.

Fifteen-year-old Michael Gibbons and his friends, Allan Skinner and Ethan Pylant, wasted no time trying out their skills. They spent the weekend doing jumps and flip tricks.

Until now, they've been skating downtown and in their backyards.

"This is going to help us out a lot more because we've never had any ramps," Ethan said.

The three friends didn't seem to mind that some of the equipment was damaged during delivery and the rest is scattered haphazardly around the court.

Mayor Jack Scott cautioned local youth to stay off the ramps until city workers can fix them.

"We're going to get down there. We just haven't had the chance yet," Scott said.

Scott said he also has two signs that need to be placed at the new skate park. One sign warns visitors that they skate at their own risk, and the other lists several rules for the facility. Among them include no cursing, no alcohol and no drugs.

Also, skaters will not be allowed on the equipment after dark.

Scott said he is excited about the new skate park and he expects it to be less of a liability than the makeshift plywood ramps some skateboarders had set up on the tennis courts without permission.

"We've needed something like this for the kids," Scott said.

Michael, Allan and Ethan are aware that some adults associate skateboarding with juvenile delinquency.

They say that they are going to do their part to change that reputation.

"Anybody who comes in here with drugs is going to get told to leave. If they don't leave, we'll just go get the police," Michael said.