Photos by Adam Lapierre

Skaters practice in the shade of the Hood River Rotary Skate Park during their diminishing summer vacations. Michael McNerney (left) and Ricardo Galvez would like a new staircase and rail for the park.


News staff writer

August 6, 2005

Skaters of all ages and skill levels are invited and encouraged to turn out for the Hood River Skate Park’s first competition of the year. The 2005 Mayonnaise Skate Jam, sponsored and organized by Doug’s Sports, is set for the afternoon of August 20.

Rebel riders reluctant to join the competition should know that all proceeds from the event will go straight back to the skate park. Specifically, the money raised from the Skate Jam will not go into the Parks and Recreation District’s skate park development fund. Instead, it will be used toward a smaller project, selected by park organizers and skateboarders.

“Funding is the number one issue holding back the park,” volunteer coordinator Julie Tucker said earlier this summer. “We have designers and builders ready but we don’t have the money to get started.”

The Mayonnaise Skate Jam will help.

“I’m really excited,” Tucker said. “It’s great to see a local store take initiative for a fund-raiser like this. Kids should participate for the fun and realize it’s not about a contest it’s about raising money for the park.”

“If fund-raisers can come up with their own money, great, they can use it,” said Lori Stirn, district director for Hood River Valley Parks and Recreation.

The competition came into form from employees at Doug’s Sports who are skaters themselves. With the help of vendors, Doug’s came up with prizes from companies like DaKine, Hurley, Oakley, Landyachtz Skateboards, Sector-9, and D.V.S.

The competition will not be judged by score but by categories like best trick, best fall, who’s having the most fun, etc. Age divisions will be established based on the turn out and events will be bowl (in the big one) and street skating.

“We want people of all ages and skill levels to come out,” said Nikki Guerra of Doug’s Sports. “We really want to emphasize fun so come out, have a good time and skate. Every cent going into this will to be put back into the park.”

“We’re trying to push the skating community and make a difference in it,” said Doug’s employee Sean

Stuart. “We’re trying to get more people involved in our community to make the kids happy. It’s not just a competition; it’s more of a fun thing to do for the day. Even just watching is a good thing to get kids stoked on having fun at the park.”

Rosauers, Safeway and Pepsi chipped in food and drinks for the contests and music via DJ will pump up competitors and entertain spectators.

Skate Park Revival Committee:

Julie Tucker is looking for help. The Skate Park Revival Committee is currently inactive due to lack of members. “I’m looking for a stable networking group of people,” she said. “We need people to help motivate, generate ideas, and help us stay on track with the goals of the park.”

For information about how to help the Hood River Rotary Skate Park, contact volunteer coordinator Tucker (541) 380-0724 or Stirn at the Parks and Recreation District (541) 386-5720.