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So what do skaters want?

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So what do skaters want?

Andrew Wood hones in on a landing during a skate session at the Manteca Skate Park.

JASON CAMPBELL/The 209


POSTED February 22, 2013 10:45 p.m.

Bring on the street course.

At least that’s the general consensus among skateboarders at area parks that say they want something to compliment the vert style that comes with the concrete construction that many cities pursue.

Andrew Wood – who likes to spend his spare time in the big bowl or sliding the curb ledges of the Manteca Skate Park – says that just a few more features would add a whole new dimension to what skaters could do.

Adding a set of stairs and a square rail and possibly a full street course, he said, would give those who like that style a place where they can practice it without running afoul of the law.

Regardless, just getting the chance to hit the park, Wood said, was good enough.

“It’s just fun to be outside instead of cooped up,” he said. “Skateboarding is something that you can do with your friends and you can get a lot of use out of a single board – it’s not a one-time thing like some of the other things out there.”

But each person who drops in wants to see something a little bit different – a testament to the individual styles that each skater possesses.

One skater talked about how he wanted a legitimate half-pipe or even a mega ramp similar to what the X Games competitors use to launch themselves on for the big air competition.

Another couldn’t stop talking about rails and boxes and a bigger pyramid in the middle of it all – something that makes absolutely no sense to anybody that has never stepped onto a skateboard but is uniformly understood by the deciding committee that had formed to decide the future of the park.

And things aren’t much different when you travel elsewhere.



Ripon’s skate park


At the Curt Pernice Skate Park in Ripon – which was reviewed by Thrasher Magazine as one of the best parks in California when it was built – the steep walls and the smooth lines are enough to satisfy the appetites of even professional skateboarders.

Only a single rail, however, is set up to cater to those who appreciate the street style after a planned attempt by some of the City Council to built a full street course fell flat.

Justice Aranda said that even thought he thought the park was really thought out, he’d like to see a box to grind or a couple of rails and possibly even some gaps to clear.

Seeing those added, he said, would just give him more of a reason to spend time at a place where everybody is really supportive and laid back.

“All of the people here are friendly and it’s a really good hangout spot,” Aranda said. “I just think that a lot of people would like to see a street course. That would add a lot to the park.”



— JASON CAMPBELL
209 staff reporter

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