Skateboarding pro to be here tomorrow

Those involved in getting a skate park built here will get to hear some words of wisdom on the topic when Jim Barnum, a former competitive skateboarder and now a skate park designer in British Columbia, visits here Saturday.
Steve Maki, who’s spearheading the project on behalf of the local Kiwanis Club, said Barnum will be arriving here Friday night, and will meet with the skate park committees struck up last week at the Memorial Sportsplex at 9 a.m. on Saturday.
“We’re gong to tell him what the plans are so far, the timeframe we’re looking at, and figure out the best way to get this done as fast as possible with good quality,” Maki noted.
“We want to know if we’re doing anything wrong and if so, how to do it any different,” he added. “He’s done this all before. He know what he’s talking about.”
After breaking for lunch, Barnum then will meet with local youths from 1-2 p.m. at the Sportsplex. All skateboarders are encouraged to come out, said Maki.
“Skateboarding is his life,” he noted. “The kids will really be into this. He’s well-known in that world, and I know some will have researched about him on the Internet.”
The aim of the skate board project is to see a 13,000 sq. ft. concrete park—which resembles a bowl-like, empty swimming pool—built on the former arena ball diamond next to the Memorial Sports Centre.
In related news, a “board-a-thon” to raise money for the project, which could cost as much as $300,000 to build, has been re-scheduled to Dec. 14 to avoid conflicting with the Easter Seals’ “Skate with Borderland Thunder” fundraiser.
At that time, skateboarders who have collected pledges will do laps around the upper part of the ’52 Canadians Arena.
Gord McQuarrie, owner of Skates & Blades here, is heading up the youth committee, which consists of adults to help local skateboarders co-ordinate their fundraising.
He recently managed to get 11 skateboards donated to award the top pledge-getters from each of the 11 schools in the area.
More information on the “board-a-thon” will be released in the near future as organizers work out the details with the town.
The next general meeting of the skate park committee is slated Tuesday, Nov. 19 at the Memorial Sports Centre.