Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

Thumbs up to the Evans’ Skatelcub Social Rollers, a group of area residents who gather twice a year to reminisce about their god times at Evans’ Skateland. The longtime Jamestown fixture closed in December 2009 and, with it, a chapter of Jamestown history for those of a certain age who grew up during the roller skating boom of the 1970s and 1980s and spent countless hours in the rink. Around 30 people attended the Evans’ Skateclub Social Rollers’ Christmas gathering recently, including Diane Evan, wife of John Evan. Together, the Evans owned and operated the rink for decades. We can’t quite put our finger on it, but receiving a news release from the group put a smile on our collective faces.

Thumbs down to the lack of cooperation by victims of recent stabbings and a drive-by shooting in Jamestown. The story isn’t new, but it is frustrating for police and for city residents who shouldn’t have to worry about being caught up in other people’s messes. We’ve said it before and it bears repeating — those who show a proclivity to harm others need to be removed from our neighborhoods. In that vein, thumbs up to whoever cooperated with Jamestown police earlier this week and helped police find and arrest three men wanted in connection wtih a drive-by shooting on Christmas Day. It’s amazing how quickly police can act when they get a little cooperation.

Thumbs up to the addition of ice bumper cars to the public offerings at the Northwest Arena. Purchased from the Ice Bumper Cars Company, the local arena becomes only the 13th location in the country to offer the activity. Based out of Colorado, Ice Bumper Cars also provided its product to Canalside in Buffalo and Cornerstone Arena in Lockport. “The big thing we wanted to do was make our arena public friendly to everyone in the community,” said Keith Martin, arena executive director. “Every person in the community is now a consumer of ours. They can come in an utilize the arena and not have to put on a pair of skates.” Nearly two decades ago, the goal of local foundations — notably the Gebbie Foundation — was to construct a building that brought people downtown for a variety of events. The addition of ice bumper cars and the possible additions of bubble soccer, backyard curling and the future addition of a Kids Zone are ways to broaden the arena’s draw past skating and hockey. These are good additions, particularly for a downtown that is trying to build itself as a destination with the National Comedy Center and new restaurants and craft beer locations.