Prairie du Chien Skate Park is complete and ready to go

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The new concrete of the addition to the Prairie du Chien Skate Park is easily distinguished. Eight more obstacles have been added and skaters will soon be enjoying the completed park. (Photo by Ted Pennekamp)

By Ted Pennekamp

 

The crew of B&R Concrete Construction of McGregor put in some crack filler and completed the final touches on the new addition to the Prairie du Chien Skate Park Tuesday morning before taking down the caution tape, thus signalling the opening of the new part of the park.

The final phase of the park has now been completed and it makes the Prairie du Chien Skate Park one of the best in the region.

“I think Lorie Floyd, the Skateboard Park group, and Children’s Advisory Board should get the perseverance credit,” said Parks and Recreation Director Mike Ulrich. “I am just happy that it’s finally completed. It shows the commitment that the many people, businesses, and organizations in our community have to our park system.” Floyd was the head of the Skate Park Committee for many years and  was instrumental in creating the park.

The newly completed skate park is the culmination of many years of planning, time, effort and donations. A meeting was held in 2005 in the Crawford County Sheriff’s Department meeting room where the idea of a skate park started to take shape. Several prospective skate park users, parents and other interested persons attended the initial meeting. On June 14, 2014, after nine years of dreaming, planning, organizing and fund-raising, the area’s only community skate park was built.

“I am very happy the project is finally completed. I never envisioned how much of a journey it would be,” said Floyd, who noted that the park is a result of the vision and collaboration of the non-profit Children’s Advisory Board, many dedicated volunteers, parents, and the Prairie du Chien Parks and Recreation Department.

“The park was an idea that came out of the Children’s Advisory Board. We wanted to build a park to include all kids, even those that were not involved in organized sports,” said Floyd. “We could not have made this happen without a commitment from the Children’s Advisory Board and specifically Skate Park Committee members Kathy Quamme, Darci Knapp, Julie White, David Nelson, Bill Miller, Wendy Garrity and Brenda Yager. There have been so many others that were consistent and always there for us for fund-raising. I appreciated their willingness to give their time and energy.”

Floyd said she greatly appreciates every business that helped by supporting the fund-raisers through sponsorships, prizes and donations. She also noted that Ulrich was always behind the scenes supporting the committee and always kept her on track and was encouraging when she needed it.

Ulrich said area residents have seen the diversity of kids and young adults who use the park and have noticed the older participants aiding the younger ones by giving helpful tips in skateboarding. 

Last summer, the park held its first skateboard competition which attracted many local youth. About 50 to 100 kids a day use the park in the summer. The skate park is in a great setting at 1004 S. 15th St. near the Wacouta Aquatic Park and Fort Fun.

Construction of the final phase of the Prairie du Chien Skate Park began on May 8. The American Ramp Company of Joplin, Mo. provided the eight additional units and B&R Concrete Construction did much of the concrete work. The total final phase cost was $70,000 and was raised entirely by fund-raising and donations through the Children’s Advisory Board. The stake park now has 13 different skate obstacles and is one of the largest skate parks in the Tri-State Area.

The first phase was a 4,399-square-foot complex provided to the community by fund-raising efforts and in-kind donations at a cost of $75,000. The final phase brought 3,359 square feet of additional skating surface. The new addition features obstacles such as two quarter pipes, a bank ramp, a banana berm, two bat wings, a skate bench and a grindbox.

The skate park provides a positive and safe environment for the skateboarders, BMX bikers, and in-line skaters of Prairie du Chien and surrounding communities, Ulrich said.

“This skateboard park not only showcases another good thing we have to offer in our community for people of all ages and ability levels, it draws folks from all over looking for more good things to do in Prairie du Chien,” said Ulrich. “Additionally, it’s not just limited to skaters, but bikers as well, which many cities do not offer. The community should be proud of this great addition!”

“The skate park is a beautiful addition to the park system in our city,” said Floyd. “It is a safe place for all skaters and BMX bikers to practice their skills. Enjoy it!”

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