Alberta Sport Survey

The Province has launched a survey to learn more about sport and physical activity in Alberta. Although it can be debated whether skateboarding is a sport or not, it can’t be argued that skateboarding involves physical activity. Take the 5 minute survey and use the “other” and final sections to mention skateboarding.

From the Alberta Government site:
“The Alberta Government would like to know your priorities for amateur sport in the province. Therefore, you are being asked to take the following survey which will demonstrate your sport priorities based on the following contexts:

-Physical Literacy
-Introduction to Sport
-Recreational Sport
-Competitive Sport
-High Performance Sport
-Sport for Development”


2 Hour drive to skate on Saturday a weekly routine

Calgary skater at Incline

Calgary skater, Austin J, at Incline
Photo: Claudio C

It’s 11:30 Saturday morning at the Incline Indoor Skate & BMX park in Sylvan Lake when a car full of skaters pulls into the parking lot.  A willing mother has just driven six 13-16 year olds from Calgary so they could skate for the day.  Getting up early and hitting the highway is routine for these passionate skaters, who recruit a driver and make the two-hour trip almost every Saturday.

What would it mean for this Calgary crew if there were an indoor park in Calgary?  “We’d save time (from the traveling), it would be more practical, and keep us fit in the winter” said Claudio aged 14.  13-year-old Austin said that an indoor park would, “keep us out of trouble, not skating in malls and the +15.” Ashton (15) agreed saying, “we wouldn’t get in trouble skating where not allowed.  Cochrane local Brandon (13) would really appreciate, “being able to skate year round, when we want.”  Claudio and Ashton both agreed that without Incline they’d be sleeping in, watching TV, playing video games, and generally being lazy if it weren’t for Incline.  At 16, Ryan sums it all up, saying, “Bring The Source back!”

This carload of Calgary skaters was not the only ones to make the trip this frosty December day.  Like other highway 2 travelers, they agree that Calgary really needs an indoor skatepark.  After chatting with them and watching them enjoy a day in the skatepark, I have to wonder how many hundreds of Calgary youth would be having fun, staying fit, staying out of trouble, and not sitting glued to the TV during our long, cold winter if Calgary had it’s own “Incline”?

 

 

Another incline shot

Calgary skater, Austin J, at Incline
Photo: Claudio C

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another incline shot

Calgary skater, Austin J, at Incline
Photo: Claudio C

Why Doesn’t Calgary Have More Skateparks

Why doesn’t Calgary have more skateparks? Edmonton is a smaller city and they have a bunch of good parks.

This is a common question for most Calgary skateboarders. While there is no “official” answer, we’ll take a stab at answering it:

When Millennium Park was completed in 2000, it was the biggest in the world. Calgary was smaller than it currently is, population-wise. The prevailing view toward skateboarding was, “we gave you the biggest park in the world so that should keep you happy.”

Although Millennium has its shortfalls, it did keep us skaters happy for a while. And maybe the fact that we had the biggest park created a view in our minds that we shouldn’t ask for more.

Fast forward a decade or so and skatepark development has come a long way. There are professional companies made up of landscape architects, engineers, and expert concrete finishers who design and build world class skateparks with carefully developed techniques. Calgary’s population has also grown about 30%.

Skateparks being built these days are better than they have ever been. Some of the recent parks built in Edmonton demonstrate that. Edmonton has nearly ten skateparks within the metro area and there is talk of more.

Zero/Mystery Skateboards demo at Callingwood Skate Plaza in Edmonton

It’s mostly been the community associations who have driven the Edmonton skatepark projects. That means that an area’s residents have an association which help promote well-being and a sense of community. You should be able to find yours here. We strongly encourage you to join or contact your local community association and let them know that a skatepark is needed in your area.

Generally an idea like a skatepark (or playground, hockey rink, etc) gets started at the community level. Someone brings that idea to a monthly community association meeting where it may be voted on. If enough members/residents think it’s a good idea, they will contact their ward alderman (find yours here). After that, the alderman presents the idea to council where it is voted on, funds are earmarked, etc.

The city of Edmonton has been better at getting things done at a community level. And what happens with this type of thing is that when one community does it, the others see what they accomplished and want to do the same– a snowball effect is created. That’s exactly what went on in Edmonton.

Mckernan Skate Spot – Edmonton

As far as progress toward getting more parks built, yes we have made some. We have been in talks with a couple of community associations. We’ve given them information and done presentations. We speak with alderman and City staff. They know we exist and that we need more skateparks. We worked on the Skateboard Amenities Strategy which has set a framework for many parks. There are two rec centres in the works that have skateparks in the plans.

We need help from everyone to get more parks. As mentioned above, contact your community association and alderman. Use Facebook, Twitter, e-mail– whatever you can to get the word out.

Come to the CASE Annual General Meeting!

Notice of Annual  General Meeting
7 PM, Wednesday May 2
Community Room
Eau Claire Market
200 Barclay Parade SW

Fuse Fest, August 2011

Every year CASE invites all of our members as well as everyone else in the Calgary skateboarding community and those who support skateboarding, to our Annual General Meeting (AGM). Our AGM is an opportunity for CASE to share  what we have accomplished, what we are working on, and what we have planned.  It will also be a chance for us to answer your questions, and hear your ideas and suggestions about what we can do for skateboarding in Calgary. If you want to get involved in  any of CASE’s efforts, you can check into that opportunity as well as CASE needs more people to contribute, a little or a lot, to help push skateboarding forward in Calgary

We are making progress towards getting  more skateparks in Calgary, and in making our city a more skate friendly place.  The progress is not as quick as we’d all like, but the progress is definite.  We’re making a difference for Calgary skateboarders and we hope you can make in on May 2nd so you can hear about developments first hand!

If you have questions, comments, or need more information before the meeting click “Contact” in the menu bar.

See YOU May 2nd!

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