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Skaters impatient for park opening

December 04, 2001|By AARON CLAVERIE, Staff Writer

CALEXICO — The half-pipe looked lonely.

A westerly wind whipping through the New River basin on Monday seemed to carry its plaintive wail, "Ollie off me, dude. C'mon. No one will know. It'll be our little secret."

There is a new skate park in Calexico that no one is allowed to use.

There is the aforementioned half-pipe, a fun box with a kinked rail and a beginners' area.

The new park is encircled by a chain-link fence. It won't be open for grinding and ollying until Dec. 15.

According to City Manager Richard Inman, the fence has failed to deter some local "Skate-or-Die" types.

Inman broke it down for the City Council in a recent letter.

"With regard to Nosotros Park, the skateboard ramps are being installed and will be in place by Friday, Nov. 30.

"Already, kids have scaled the fence and entered the park," he wrote.

Inman is looking to nip this illicit skating in the bud.

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According to the letter, he sent word to the Calexico Police Department to step up patrols at the unopened park. He has contacted Day Night Security to have the park guarded until the grand opening.

Inman is working on a contingency plan for a permanent solution to this problem.

One solution? Inman wants to put a trailer near the new park the can serve as headquarters of the Police Athletic League and as a substation for the Police Department.

"This may ultimately solve our problem," he wrote.

On Monday afternoon there was no security guard and no skaters at the park. The area was deserted and the only sound was provided by the wind.

Dust clouds off the dirt road just south of the park billowed intermittently. The unique smell of the New River permeated the site.

There is no grass yet at the park but everything looks pretty good aside from that. Everything seems to be in order for the grand opening. The lights are in place and the picnic tables are ready to be set.

That opening should be a gala affair. There will be appearances by Assemblyman David Kelley, R-Idyllwild, and former city Parks and Recreation Commissioner Jack Anderson.

Those two will have sections of the park dedicated in their honor.

When Anderson was on the commission, he lobbied the then-state Sen. Kelley for funds.

Kelley secured half of the funds for the park while he was senator. The rest of the money was provided by the City Council recently after the council decided it didn't want to wait for a new funding cycle before finishing the park.

>> Staff Writer Aaron Claverie can be reached at 337-3419 or claverie7@hotmail.com

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