Around Lakeside-Skate Park celebrates its one-year anniversary

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Lakeside’s Skate Park celebrated it’s first birthday April 25 with lots of friends and families in the mix to help the mostly boys … and even a few girls … celebrate the occasion.

Lakeside’s Skate Park celebrated it’s first birthday April 25 with lots of friends and families in the mix to help the mostly boys … and even a few girls … celebrate the occasion.

Terry Burke-Iserling and Jerry Mosier, who I consider to be the mother and father of the Skate Park, because they were the main pushers in keeping the dream alive, were all puffed up with pride watching their “kids” enjoy the park. Even though it was a drizzly day there was no shortage of youngsters practicing their skills on scooters, bikes and skate boards. All seemingly to take turns and look out for the little ones and share the lumps, bumps, grinds, bowls and edges.

Other members of the Friends of the Skate Park Committee who were instrumental in the creation of the park, were on hand to help celebrate as well. They included Jason Roberts, Ralph Goodrich, Kathy Kassel and Caprice Sander.  Six giant pizzas were spread out and cut up for the skaters, scooter kids and friends to enjoy. Better Days Pizza on Maine Avenue donated them.  Two giant decorated cakes were purchased by the Skate Committee and hand delivered by James Iserling for the skaters and friends to enjoy as well.

While the kids were gathered around eating, Burke-Iserling and Mosier gave a pep talk to them, reminding them about good manners, taking turns, and being considerate of other folks using Lindo Lake Park.

“These are people who gave you a safe and enjoyable place to skate” she said. Mosier told them to police themselves, pick up trash, keep it clean and not to disrespect other park goers.

Mark Johnson, who owns a Skate Shop at the corner of Los Coches Rd and Julian Avenue, told the youth that he has created a new program at the Teen Center where kids can volunteer hours of cleanup and receive free helmets and other skate supplies.

Stephanie Carter, a mother who brought her 6 and 10-year-old boys to practice, said that they live across the street from the Park and she home schools the children so she likes to bring them to the Skate Park to socialize them and for the exercise. She also mentioned that on Wednesdays they meet with 10 other home schooled students to use the skate park together and it is always a positive experience.

Pastor Ralph pointed out “If you look at the other parts of Lindo Park there are not many people using it on a Saturday morning, but if you look at the Skate Park … there are many people using it on a Saturday morning.”

Mosier stated that the Skate Park has so much potential, when they get the bugs worked out. He would like to see the statistics on vandalism in the business community, in other words how the skate park has given the kids a safe place to practice on their bikes, skates and scooters, he thinks the vandalism has gone down.  “If we don’t give them a place to practice, they will find one,” he said. 

I overheard one skater say “I can’t believe it’s been a whole year, it feels like a month!” Brian Green, age 12 was wearing a helmet and said he brought his skate board and scooter to practice on. His friend, Ryan Willis, age 16, was not wearing a helmet, which surprised me. I thought there would be a rule about wearing helmets. I asked him if he ever gets in trouble with the Sheriffs who patrol the Skate Park, for not wearing a helmet and he said, “No, I guess they have more important things to worry about.”    

Assemblyman, Brian Jones, drafted Assembly Bill 1146 which will help protect all crossover sports and non-motorized wheels for recreation—including wheel chairs. Burke-Iserling added, “This is the best recreation ever, they are all in one spot and we know where they are.”

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