Monday, June 22, 2009

BMX and Skateboards: Can't We All Just Play Together?

Posted By on Mon, Jun 22, 2009 at 12:53 PM

Obviously, the guys from Dinosaur Jr. have the concept down that BMX and skateboarders are fully capable of playing together in peace and harmony—so why can't they do the same thing in Tucson at the soon-to-open Albert Gallego Skate Park at Santa Rita Park? Last time we checked in with Mike Hines and his friend Chris Miracle, the two BMX enthusiasts were asking Tucson Parks and Recreation to consider allowing BMX.

Hines and Miracle have pointed out other skateboard parks that allow BMX at the same time, or during certain hours, such as in Mesa, where BMX and skateboard use occurs at the same time, or at Marana's skate park, with a day reserved just for BMX. The discussions with Parks and Rec went nowhere, except some advice that the BMXers begin their fundraising to build their own facility.

"No, they're not budging. They keep telling us to raise our own money and talk to our City Council members. I've talked to Steve Anderson, the ward supervisor of that district, and he doesn't see why we aren't allowed, but he hasn't done anything to help us, either. Peg Weber wants me to help plan something in the future, but we need a place right now. This whole thing is silly. Just let bikes in. Give it a trial period. If it doesn't work then they can at least say that. Oh well, hopefully we will make some noise," Hines wrote to the Weekly in a recent e-mail.

BMX riders of Tucson will get a chance to make that noise at a protest on Sunday, June 28.

According the schedule, protesters will meet at Brooklyn Pizza on Fourth Avenue from 9:30 to 10:15 a.m. (or meet at the park at 22nd Street and South Third Avenue at 11 am.). The group from Brooklyn will leave the restuarant at 10:30 a.m. and ride as a group to protest at the park at 11 a.m.

Hines says everyone is invited even if they don't ride BMX. There will also be a product toss and raffle from sponsors, such as Ajo Bikes and Broadway Bicycles). Proceeds from the raffle will go to the Kory Laos Foundation. Laos was killed while riding his BMX near a busy street close to the UA on May 4, 2007—two days before his 15th birthday. Friends and family contend Laos would be alive today if there was a place for him to ride, such as the Albert Gallego Skate Park at Santa Rita Park.

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