Concord skate park brings old and new enthusiasts to sport

  • Carter Cutrer works on his form as he skateboards at the park near Everett Arena in Concord on July 7. Geoff Forester / Monitor staff

  • Carter Cutrer, 13, at the Skatepark near Everett Arena in Concord on July 7.

  • Carter Cutrer works on his form as he skateboards at the park near Everett Arena in Concord on July 7. GEOFF FORESTER / Monitor staff

Monitor staff
Published: 7/23/2021 3:44:42 PM

As the heat of the day gave way to afternoon shadows, the dirt parking lot began to fill. A tree with branches laden with shoes blocked the sun over a now-occupied picnic table. As the shadows crept across the park, the skaters came out. Soon, the sound of busy Loudon Road was replaced by thuds and grinding noises or the occasional yelp that precedes a tumble.

Concord Skate Park is nothing fancy, but it remains a draw for all ages of skaters who have taken pride in the area and want their sport to thrive.

While there are plans for a new park, skaters are currently making due with the 20-year-old park and its concrete ramps.

Among the skaters is Eric Dasaro recognizable by his small dog Fran, with whom he shares his skateboard. The 32-year-old Dasaro has been going to the park since he was a kid and is among the skaters taking care of the park.

“We started painting the park last year because it was filled with a lot of graffiti and unsafe skate obstacles,” Dasaro said. One of these obstacles was something called a pole jam, which is a steel rod sticking out of the ground at an angle for skaters to grind off. It was previously installed by skaters and skaters were told by the city to remove it.

Mac Wolfe came down from the Lakes Region because he likes the community of skaters in Concord.

“There are skate parks right where I am but there is not the community that we have here in Concord,” said Wolfe.

The skaters in Concord keep the area clean. They feel a sense of ownership.

“They really take care of the park, they try and clean up after themselves,” said Wolfe. “Sometimes we will get out-of-towners who will come in and do graffiti and we will just cover it up.”

Their latest effort was repainting the park.

The base of the park is painted like a large black and white checkerboard and the ramps are aquamarine with green highlights.

Another renovation was meant to commemorate Jon Smith, a skater who passed away in 2018. His name is displayed on a plaque on the picnic table beneath the tree filled with shoes.

The work has started to change who comes to the park.

“After we started painting it last year, we started seeing more parents and kids come here and that is the future,” said Dasaro.

Thirteen-year-old Carter Cutrer said he likes the park’s ramps and its current paint job. Fifteen-year-old Teigan Mason said young and old skaters treat each other with respect.

“We know pretty much everybody,” Mason said.

Wolfe said he likes skateboarding because of its larger lessons.

“It teaches me that it is okay to fail, because you fail again and again, and you get hurt,” Wolfe said. “What you get from landing a trick, it just keeps you going.”

This community of skaters has also started advocating for a new park.

According to Parks and Recreation Director David Gill, the idea was discussed at a recent meeting.

“A group of adults and kids got together and came to the recreation park advisory board, last month and said hey we would like to help the city start getting ready for the (new) skate park,” said Gill.

Gill commended the skateboarders at the current park for keeping the place in good shape.

“The skateboard community over the past year and a half, has done a great job maintaining, they are self-policing the trash. I think it’s an intergenerational location now,” said Gill.

Over the next six to eight months the specifics of the new park will be decided through conversations with the community, said Gill. The cost of the park and how it will be funded still need to be determined.

Gill thinks the interest in skateboarding will continue to grow.

“I think it is exciting, this summer is the first time skateboarding is an Olympic sport,” said Gill.




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