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Skateboard club rallies for improvements to local facilities

The JCHS Skateboard Club is trying to break stereotypes and in the process trying to make awareness of improvements to the local skateboard park.
The Skateboard Club, which is sponsored by Priscilla Davis, Sarah Campbell and Amanda Mullins, has only a handful of members but everyone of them love to skate and want to see them have the same access to their sport as the major sports at JCHS.
One of those skaters is Jesse Slemp. He enjoys being a part of this club and wants to see improvements be made at the skateboard park.
“It’s basically about having a place to skate that won’t get us in trouble and keep us off the streets,” he said. “We skate at Ralph Stout Park and it’s not too much to skate on. We need something bigger. This club is to help us get a better spot to skate.”
Skateboarders have had to face a stigma placed on them that they are troublemakers, but Slemp knows better and wants people to know that the kids in this club are good kids.
“They think we’re troublemakers because we don’t have anywhere to skate and just because there’s nowhere to skate and we do it is why they think we get in trouble,” Slemp said.
Two members of the club, Joey Porter and Jacob Spregue, have presented a display to the city council to show the need for better skate facilities.
“We went and talked about what we wanted to do at the skate park, and what we wanted to improvement,” Porter said.
Sprague pointed out that not everybody can play football and basketball and that the town needs things for the kids to do.
Skateboarding gives people a chance to express themselves and keeps them from doing bad things.
“A lot of people can’t play those sports and when you pick up a skateboard and it gets you off the streets and gives you something to do,” Spregue said.
Said Porter: “Unlike the ball sports like football and basketball, you can express yourself freely and however you want.”
In the presentation, Porter and Spregue presented what the equipment was they wanted to get and that the park is hazardous and that they want it to be safe.
“If we improve our skate park, there will be a better environment to skate and they will be less likely to get in trouble for skating anywhere else to get in trouble,” Porter said. “It helps the whole community.”
The skateboard club is definitely trying to make a difference.
“We’ve had a few fundraisers and went to the city council, so we’re going somewhere with it,” Spregue said.
Said sponsor Sarah Campbell: “This club has worked hard with fundraising, but we are looking for additional funding in order to make some improvements the kids would like to see happen in the community.”