$80,000 skate park planned for Mercer park

May 13, 2004|LIZ MAPLES

HARRODSBURG - Kids may soon be doing handplants and ollies in Harrodsburg.

The Anderson-Dean Community Park board voted Tuesday to recommend that the local governments raise money for a skatepark. They studied the issue for 90 days, and once board members saw a petition with the signatures of 200 kids, they knew there was a need, Bill Wickliffe, board chairman, said today in a telephone interview.

The board hopes to build a park for $80,000. County and city governments told the park board that they would try to raise the money through grants and donations. "The park is for people of all ages 2 -82," Wickliffe said. "For the kids that don't play baseball or soccer, but do have skateboards, we want to reach them too."

The concrete pad will be 110 feet by 60 feet, and will have equipment secured on it. The board hopes that it will attract athletes from all over.


Wickliffe said that when the board began to study other area parks they were surprised how far kids would come to skate."It's like our pool; we have people from eight, 10 counties away come to use it," he said.

Wickliffe said that they will be ready when the local governments raise the money. "If you give kids something to do they are going to stay out of trouble."

The park will adopt a skate at-your-own-risk policy. "There was some concern about safety, but there is risk involved with anything we put at the park," Wickliffe said.

Before deciding to build the facility, the board formed a committee and had a survey put in a local newspaper. Both the committee and survey indicated there was interest.

Danville City Commission voted recently to buy $45,000 worth of equipment for a park in the city, but there is still some question about where it will go when it arrives.

The Boyle County park board recommended that it go on an abandoned tennis court in Jackson Park. Some neighbors around that park have objected, and asked that it be put in Millennium Park.

However, the cost to build a concrete pad would be as much as the budget for equipment, according to Commissioner Jamey Gay.

Danville skaters have rallied in front of city hall twice in the past two weeks with signs that read, "Have a Heart Build a Skatepark." They've asked for the park because it is illegal for them to skate on any impervious surface in the city except the street.

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