Selma skate park under construction

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 29, 2007

The Selma Times-Journal

It won’t be long before skaters have a safe place to perform rail grinds and get some air.

A foundation was being prepared Monday for a concrete slab to be laid at Bloch Park for the first phase of what will be a skate park.

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Last summer, the Selma City Council approved a measure to spend $60,000 in each of three-phases to construct the park. The funds were derived from $122, 444 in oil leasing appropriations. Each council member received a share of those funds and Mayor James Perkins Jr. proposed each council member contribute $6,000 to cover the costs.

Following a 6-2 vote, the council decided that each member would contribute as much as he or she saw fit to the project. Perkins committed his entire share.

“This park would be a good asset, and it would be a good addition to recreation for our city,” Perkins said in a previous report. “It would also contribute to the efforts of fitness, wellness and prevention in the healthcare areas. It would add a lot of value to Bloch Park.”

Talks of a Selma skate park circulated when Clay Smith mailed a business letter to Perkins complete with potential park designs when he was 13. Smith, who is now 16, has been skateboarding for six years.

“I think we need more recreational things for children and teenagers to do in Selma,” Smith wrote in the letter. “I think it would be nice for all of us to get together and build a skateboard park.”

The park would be a welcome addition to the Queen City. Last June the American Ramp Company built a portable demo park at Bloch Park, drawing skate enthusiasts from near and far. The American Ramp Company, based in Joplin, Mo., was chosen to head up the skate park construction.