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Skate park still in works


After first pledging to build one in 2000, Mayor Glenn Witherspoon said an area for local youths to in-line skate and skateboard very well could materialize this year.

“We told the public we would work on this. And while it hasn’t come up in a while, we have been,” he remarked at Monday night’s council meeting.

“We have some videos on the equipment we’ll need and we figure it probably will be an inexpensive project—$5,000-$6,000. We can make it happen,” added the mayor.

“We’ll now go one step further and make it a reality.”

The mayor said more information on the project will be available this spring. In the meantime, he suggested property near the Memorial Sports Centre possibly would be a good spot for the skate park.

The subject of a skate park was brought up after council took a look at a petition submitted by local teen Danielle Shine-Bedard, who collected 150 signatures from youths and adults alike.

“Two years ago, the Mayor of Fort Frances, Glenn Witherspoon, outlawed roller-blading, skateboarding, etc. in the downtown area and public parking lots. This area was used after stores were closed for the day,” she wrote.

“When they made this decision, this left the teen generation with time on their hands and nothing to do. As a teen of Fort Frances, our teen generation deserves something useful,” she added.

Shine-Bedard noted Mayor Witherspoon had promised the demand for a in-line skating and skateboarding area would be met during his last election campaign—and yet nothing had been done since.

“I, as a young citizen of the community of Fort Frances, think that the mayor should not go back on his word,” she wrote. “I hope this issue is discussed and a solution is found.”

Shine-Bedard couldn’t be reached for further comment before press time.

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