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Skateboarders, some on a mission, united in Bradenton competition

THE DAILY FRAY
February 28, 2015 2:12 pm

Boardr Am

On Saturday, the boarding faithful turned out on an overcast day at the Bradenton Riverwalk Skatepark to encourage dozens of skateboarders in a national competition. (Daily Fray photo)

Waivers? Skateboard nation don't need no stinkin' waivers. They want freedom from park fees and traffic tickets. "We are off to a great start but still have a long way to go yet," says Tim Payne, an organizer for Free Florida Skateparks, a group trying to change state law.

Under a Florida traffic statute, skateboarders can be ticketed for riding on some public streets, mostly in downtown areas. Most public skateparks are fenced and many charge fees. For minors, a waiver signed by parents is required by cities and counties, presumably to avoid lawsuits. Free Florida Skateparks is trying to change all that, taking a petition to Tallahassee to move lawmakers.

The skateboard petition says "A skater can fall down in front of City Hall and file a lawsuit just as easily as when skating inside any public skatepark -- which, by the way, has been proven to be just as safe as most any other recreational activity. Check out the national sports injury statistics."

In February, a Senate bill by David Simmons (R) of Altamonte Springs cleared the Judiciary Committee and a House bill by Rep. Julio Gonzalez (R) of Sarasota was OK'd in Local Government Affairs. The bills carve out recreational restrictions on skateboarding, stunt biking and inline skating from a law adopted in the 1980s and frees cities and counties from waiver requirements.

As for thrills vs. spills, Gonzalez is chairman of Florida's Orthopaedic Society Board of Directors.

A Facebook page for Free Florida Skateparks is gaining speed. "The bill is common sense and simple," said Chuck Dinkins, a lead organizer.

On Saturday, the boarding faithful turned out on an overcast day at the Bradenton Riverwalk Skatepark to encourage dozens of skateboarders in a national competition. The six-city Boardr Am Series sends winners  to compete in the X Games.

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Brodys.jpgRead more here: http://www.bradenton.com/2015/02/28/5661294_bradenton-riverwalk-to-host-national.html?rh=1#storylink=cpy

 

 

 

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