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Skateboard ministry
Conyers FUMC Warehouse Skate Park draws youth, provides safe place to skate
For many skateboarders in Rockdale County, there has been no real place to go practice the sport they love. Many kids are frustrated when they try to gather. Skating involves a lot of balance, concentration and safety measures, and there are few places to go without neighbors worrying or store owners clearing sidewalks.

There's a good reason for that - it's very easy to become distracted skating, darting between cars, riding railings and risking accidents.

So when Heritage High School sophomore Travis Hurt pitched his skate park idea to Andrew Covington, the youth minister at Conyers First United Methodist Church, he was gladdened by the great response. Hurt had been skating for a long time, and with the support of several friends, he presented his ideas to Andrew and the church trustees. Still Lumber generously donated scrap wood for supplies. Soon, a skate park ministry was born.

"Everywhere else, it's illegal. My parents feel better that I'm skating here," Travis commented.

Less than one year old, the skate park is fully operational and is located in the student center of the church. During the summer, students in sixth grade and older are invited to try their 5-0 or Ollie on the half pipe, quarter pipes, bank or flat bar. There's even talk of several churches working as partners to grow the skating ministry.

"We're hoping to fix the ramps and hold contests. We'd like to offer classes and teach others what we've learned. Anyone who wants to know more should check out our Web site. There's a video of us using the ramps," Hurt said.

Adult supervision is provided during operating hours on Sunday evenings from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. and a parent permission waiver must be signed. Youth are encouraged to come to skate and stay for worship from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the student center.

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