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‘Unique Obstacles’

Air Seekers Find ‘Second Home’ At Warren Skate Park

Above left, Mason Foust steadies for a handstand kickflip. Above right, James Clare of Jamestown, skates. Below, Adison Pirrello does a boardslide. All three were at the Warren Skate Park. Photos by Brian Ferry

WARREN, Pa. — After 10 years, Warren Skate Park still feels like home.

The facility first opened at Beaty Park in 2010 and, depending on the weather and what else is going on, has seen steady use ever since.

There were about 10 young men on skateboards and scooters at the park Monday evening.

They were doing tricks with names like tre flip, pole jam, and firecracker.

“We love this park,” Dylan Hochstine said.

“This is my second home,” Mason Foust said. “I’m here basically every day. It’s a great escape.”

“There are so many places around here you can just go and think — like the bike trail,” Syngyn Swartz said. “It’s beautiful.”

The park is important to them and they treat it right.

The skateboarders pack in and pack out. What they bring, they take. And then some.

“We go around and make sure we clean up before we leave,” Swartz said.

Sometimes, they have to clean up before they begin.

The small wheels on boards and scooters don’t react well to small, hard obstacles. “Rocks… that can hurt us,” Foust said.

They take steps to avoid getting hurt, but falls happen.

“It’s part of the sport,” Hochstine said. “You’re going to get scrapes. You’re going to get bruises.”

“You fall, you learn,” Foust said.

When someone falls, the others have been there. And, when someone performs a trick just right, they often hear their comrades cheer in approval.

“There’s good people here,” Swartz said.

“It’s a really great place to meet people,” Hochstine said.

In fact, the park had some newcomers, visitors from the north, on Monday. There are fewer options for skating in Jamestown than there have been in the past.

Even if his home facility was open, ’90s James’ Clare would spend time at Warren’s park. “It’s a fun place,” Clare said. “Unique obstacles. It’s fun to learn new tricks.”

There aren’t turf issues. Anyone with an interest in the sport is welcome.

“You come here and there’s no judgment,” Foust said.

“With all the racism that’s going on right now… racism doesn’t exist in the skateboarding community,” Hochstine said.

The skaters would like to see some improvements in their park. “A mini ramp … half-pipe,” Foust said. “A water fountain in the park … that would be wonderful.”

Several pointed out Monday that the lights could use some work.

But, the park is important to them and they are happy with it.

“We deserve a spot in the community,” Hochstine said.

“I love this park,” Foust said.

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