Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Picking up again...

Well, it's been months since my last posts...

I'm still in the game, with a more finely honed vision for what I want to see happening with skateboard facilities in the city I live in.

In short, to be elaborated later on, I'd like to see skateboarding facilities embedded in "at risk" neighborhood as a positive alternative to the "Big Three Options" that face most kids I know here in Northside:

1. Pro Basketball Player
2. Rap Star on BET
3. Dealing Drugs on the corner with my cousins

Let's face it. There are parks available in the Cinci Area, but how many of them are even on the bus lines? Those that are are not within an hour of these kids. Skateparks are going up like wildfire in the midwest, but they are a SUBURBAN, AFFLUENT, PHENOMENON.
Adding insult to injury, most of these fine skateboard companies and people who push for parks are drawn in by some amalgam of "hardcore", "outlaw", "urban rough" cultural trappings. Dressed as something revolutionary, yet truly available to only the richest americans.

You have to have access to a CAR to use the Skateboarding Facilities around Cincinnati.

So let's do something really cool. Let's get grants and scrape together philanthropic donations to get high-quality, durable, low-maintenance, concrete skateboarding facilities incorporated into the city-scape of Cincinnati. We can do this in neighborhoods and properties that would otherwise breed crime.

Frankly, skateboarding will provide "Option 4", plus exposure to people from all walks of life. Skateboarding will become a vehicle of exposure for people from all over to meet and interact with kids and people in the inner city.

Racial Barriers
Social problems
will be exposed and eroded...

Potential Help
will be discovered
as people come to enjoy the park and meet children there who exist on social programs...

advocacy can be generated by such exposure...
crime can be reduced in neighborhoods as higher population ofusers "hardens the target". And Skateboarding is a perfect vehicle for it, as skateboarders tend to be willing to take small risks lightly... a park in a difficult neighborhood will be heavily trafficked, provided that it is high-quality.

Some thoughts with more to come.

Anyone want to coalesce? drop me a comment.