Resident asks city to back upgrade to skate parkMar 13, 2012 By Emily Etheredge, Staff Writer
Riverton resident David Lain loves to skateboard, and he wants to use that love to improve the city.
Lain has been using the skate park since 2004, and on March 6 he approached the Riverton City Council to express his desire to see improvements at the park.
With the permission of the city of Riverton, the sponsorship of businesses and help of private donations, Lain would like to host a one- or two-day event called SKORCH (which stands for skate or pass the torch).
"The aim of the SKORCH tour is simple," Lain said. "We would strive to increase the quality and accessibility of the local skate park by raising money for routine maintenance and eliminating derogatory or otherwise degrading circumstances within the park."
After skating at the park for eight years, Lain said he would like to do something about bettering its reputation.
He said he has researched MTV reality star Rob Dyrdek's foundation that strives to create healthy communities by promoting the benefits of skateboarding, and from his research, he learned he would have to get a 501 c3 status before Dyrdek's foundation would be able to help.
"I would like to ask the council for direction on how to obtain a 501 c3 so that I could proceed forward with this project," Lain said.
Councilwoman Diana Mahoney said Lain should meet with staff to discuss his plans for the project and perhaps find an organization in town that already falls under the charitable organization category of a 501 c3 group.
"Know that I have read this proposal numerous times, and I think it sounds wonderful," Mahoney said. "I support you and think the whole concept sounds great."
Lain said he would like to gather volunteers to paint the ramps and paint landscapes, space-scapes and murals of skaters in action over the graffiti.
Mayor Ron Warpness said he thought Lain's project was a great idea and said the council would be willing to help Lain in his endeavors.
Public services director Bill Urbigkit said he is excited to help Lain develop ideas for the possible excavation of the pool and for assisting Lain in finding grants that would help the park.
"I think we can take this and run with it under the city of Riverton's umbrella," Urbigkit said. "I think we can help these young people, guide them, and I have already been looking into designs for the snake pit or bowl out of the old swimming pool. It fascinates me, and I don't know how to pour concrete in something like that but am interested in helping them out."
Lain said he plans to meet with city administrator Steven Weaver this week to further discuss his ideas, and he hopes to meet with the Riverton Recreation board and fill out a late application for funds to help the project.
Mahoney asked Lain how many volunteers he had acquired so far.
"I currently have 16 committed to giving monetary donations, and I have about 32 volunteers right now who are willing to show up at the park and help clean it up," Lain said.