San Diego's skateboarders now have a chance to show off their skills at two new skate parks, including the second largest one in California.
Both Linda Vista and City Heights are home to brand new skate parks. The city unveiled 34,000 square feet of skating space Tuesday for the local skating community at Linda Vista Park. Due to its spacious size, the park has attracted national attention.
The park's creation was prompted by a grassroots movement. Councilmember Scott Sherman said he has been working on the project since he took office in 2012. In a social media post, he said he's very excited that the park is finally opening.
It all began when a group of kids approached Sherman with thousands of signatures requesting a park. He admitted there were challenges to obtaining sufficient funding sources. In the end, they were able to receive a donation from the Tony Hawk Foundation, as well as a $4.4 million grant from Affordable Housing.
One local skater Celestino Mayo told NBC 7 that skating is a positive way to channel his energy and express himself.
“Skateboarding to me is sort of like an art form and a way of life,” Mayo said. “If I wasn’t skating, I feel like I’d probably be in the streets doing weird stuff.”
Skating groups will hold competitions at the park. Sherman said he's already been contacted by some groups interested in using the space.
“I feel like skating has brought me to a very positive community," added Mayo.
At the Linda Vista Park, there are obstacles and challenges available for all levels of skaters. Some unique features include a replica of the stairs in front of the nearby library. That's a favorite spot often frequented by local skaters.