A Skate Park is in the Making

By Ronelle Williams | rwilliams@kq2.com

Published 08/03 2014 07:19PM

Updated 08/03 2014 10:51PM

(COUNTRY CLUB VILLAGE, Mo.) A local man wants the youth to have a place to go to stay out of trouble.  And after raising nearly $2,000 in only a week, he's off to a good start.  In the early 2000's, there was a skate park called Zebo's.  It was owned by the parents of Reyce Merritt but unfortunately closed after a year.

"It was open for about a year and it closed down.  Just wasn't bringing in enough money to stay open and keep the doors open," said Project Coordinator Reyce Merritt.

While the skate park was unique to the area, the younger community had to go elsewhere.

"It really made it rough on kids around town who wanted to skate and skateboard.  They had to drive an hour or so away to go to Olathe or Kansas City just to skate," said Merritt.

More than 10 years after Zebo's, Reyce wants to build a skate park for the youth.

"I want to give back to my community, I want the kids to have somewhere to skate.  I'm going to try to set up an afterschool program, maybe with transportation involved," said Merritt.

The community has shown their support by donations and even offering their services.
"I'm having people contact me that are construction guys that are offering to do the construction for free.  I had an electrical guy offer to so some electrical work for free.  So the whole community's just really getting behind me.  And I've got a sense of pride over that like I never imagined," said Merritt.

Kids will be able to have another outlet if they're not involved in organized sports.  An opportunity to take part in something different.

"I always felt for the people that weren't involved in sports or just any kind of other activities.  It seemed always that there was a few things lacking from this city like what to do.  I know skating was a big one for a lot of people," said Supporter Michael Lauritzen.

Aside from kids just having a place to go, supporters are confident that the park will help keep kids out of trouble.

"This is definitely one of those things that will keep kids, their time occupied and hopefully doing something productive for themselves," said Lauritzen.
"At the end of the day it's just a skate park to a lot of people but to these kids it'll mean the world," said Merritt.

A car wash will be held next Sunday, August 10th, from 12 PM to 6 PM at Ace Automotive Empire to benefit the future skate park.  Reyce has hopes that everything will be completed by late winter.

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