Friday, November 27, 2015

This is How We Move Forward at Scalzi Skatepark / #socialresponsibility #awareness #positivedisruption

(Updated 11/27/15 2:40 pm)

Did you know that Scalzi Skatepark in Stamford is actually called a ‘flow’ park? 

That’s a skatepark that has both a a street course and a skating bowl in the same location and having both skating ‘style of segments’ easy flow from one on to the other. At Scalzi, we have two tremendously awesome skate bowls and yet, the ‘street course’ venue is truncated and demure …off to the side sort of.

Currently, I am working on landing an ‘ollie?’ I grew up surfing long-boards and not trick skating so I am nowhere near as great on the board as most others at the park, but I have come a long way in just the three months I have been practicing at their. Others do ollies AND kick the board flipping it once or twice in the air as they seemingly hover above it placidly before they land back confidently on it again.

Creating independent operating systems tied to a common goal

Chris and Brian, are two operating systems within the context of our common goal of enhancing the park and its value to the community. Rather than have just one’s individual vision, each system fully leads its project 100% from the get-go. Chris and Brian are in charge of the Skate 101 class setup with my supervision. It is a growing hope a local father who coaches his son at the park lead in facilitating ithe creation of the youth tournament league. 

Another key piece developing is a skateboard sports camp. I am listening to and being advised by locals on the ground as well as reps of established skateboarding camps. It is a work in collaborative process aimed at not just straight-on skateboard instruction, but making a very physical, executive function skills curriculum that would include mentoring and all the bells and whistles a well-run camp should have. The park outside the confines of the skating area is large enough and with enough other facilities to create a curriculum of active life skills development. I leave my thoughts open-ended here because I am interested in being approached by businesses that want to work together with me in this project. Though not an exhaustive list, I feel that a skateboarding executive FUNction skills camp could also offer basic yoga and meditation, soccer, chess and even perhaps basic martial arts. One of my ideas, as far-fetched as it may currently sound, is that a writing program be attached to the curriculum. They could keep notebooks for writing observations and instruction as well as give reflective feedback in written format. I look forward to listening to new ideas, different ideas and different ways on how to bring this about also. It is more fun when we do it together rather than alone also. Add your voice or your organizations voice.Putting the shoulder to the plow gets much easier when we are working on projects we are already passionate about. 

Invariably, starting all these endeavors will require resources of monetary value. We would need skateboards for the classes and camps, if a youth league happens… uniforms would have to be purchased and the tournament banners I am foreseeing in my minds eye will not come free of charge. There are  hidden costs that need to be assessed and addressed to set up for a good takeoff. The creation of the non-profit, Just Life Skills would allow for a portion of proceeds be channeled to be further invested in such desired goals for the team as night lights. 

In the mean time, Cello and I will be establishing a new additional relationship for the team with the city before mid-December. To be discussed:

  1. permission and support for a bi-yearly revitalization kick off event for Scalzi Skatepark
  2. hosting of graffiti art gallery events

Current priorities include:

  • establishing date with the city to sand blast skatepark paint and graffiti
  • to usher in mural art work commencement
  • launching crowd funding campaign to purchase 5-8 thin wood panels/ placards from Home Depot to create art space for local graffitiests.
  • set up skateboard 101 classes with Brian and Chris
  • complete and file non-profit, Just Life Skills 
As a last note, the public servants who serve our communities day and night  also are working in tandem with our efforts and most definitely putting their own shoulders to the plow. They are integral to the success of our on-going mission.Their work and protection is greatly valued.

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