Trusted local news leader for Kingman, Arizona & Mohave County
Mon, Sept. 16

Column: Someone should step up for BMX, skateboard kids

Nobody can be at all places at all times, nor can they be all things to all people. This is sad because people fall through the cracks and, sometimes, are easily forgotten. As I pursued the story about the kids that ride skateboards and BMX bikes here in Kingman, I was left with the impression that they have been lost in the shuffle somewhere.

That's not to take away the fact that they have a skate park. The skate park is a wonderful asset for Kingman, and it should be held high as one of the places we have for our youth to go and enjoy themselves. Not every city has a skate park.

The part that I find unfortunate is that there isn't any organization for these kids. ESPN is about to put on its 14th version of the X Games on Aug. 1 in Los Angeles. It would be nice to someday see a kid from Kingman make it that far, but I can't help but think that they are behind the proverbial 8-ball. Some sort of structure for them to succeed would say a lot about our town.

Pat and Michelle Hurley, owners of Outer Limitz Clothing, have done a great job in not just giving the kids a place to go for their equipment needs, but also by providing a social service for the kids. Their store is a place where the kids can go and talk about the things going on in their lives.

But these kids need more than that. Baseball, softball and swimming kids have huge support systems in place for them to not only fine tune their skills in these sports, but they also have adult guidance to help them walk through this crazy world that we live in. The skateboarding and biking kids need the same.

I found out that to organize an event at the skate park costs some serious money due to insurance liabilities. I have seen a lot of imaginative adults in this community who have found ways to raise funds for their respective teams and clubs. It would be a wonderful testimony to Kingman if some of this energy could be used to help the kids at the skate park.

The strength I've seen around town when it comes to the kids has been amazing. There is seemingly a car wash held every weekend for one organization or another. Somebody is out there with an extreme games background. This somebody has a wonderful opportunity to put their mark on a large group of kids. Even if only one kid gets touched, it would make the effort worthwhile.

Next time you're driving east on I-40, take a glance at the skate park. It's packed with kids, silently cringing for the attention they so deserve. These are Kingman's kids, and they need to be treated as such.

The opportunity has presented itself for Kingman. We have an opening to be pioneers. We could be one of the first, if not the first, communities to embrace the kids who revel in skateboarding and BMX riding. It's an awesome shot at becoming a role model for Mohave County, Arizona and even the country.

Should someone step up and take a chance on these kids, they would not only be doing them a favor. I'd love to cover a Kingman X Games-type event. That would mean that there were less kids getting lost in the shuffle.

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