Lack of skate parks in South Mississippi concern skateboarders

Lack of skate parks in South Mississippi concern skateboarders

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Skateboarding has always been a favorite hobby of 17-year-old Jacob Germany and his friends.

However, as of lately, they haven't had anywhere to practice their craft. Their favorite skate park in Biloxi closed down years ago.

"They just took the ramps down. But I've been told there's nothing even there, it's just like a flat space now. Nothing happened, it could have still been a skate park the whole time," said Germany. 

Now, Germany and his friends are resorting to a "makeshift" skate park in Gulfport; completely built by local skateboarders.

"We made it because we love skateboarding. It's a dedication we have into it. We would love to have more support from cities to get more skate parks so we can do what we love," said Germany.

Since the closing of Harrison County Skate park, the only official location in South Mississippi is in Pascagoula. Even though some people like the location, others aren't in love with the environment.

Rumors of drug use and homelessness at the Pascagoula park concern some residents.

"Personally, I haven't heard very much of the drugs. I know there are homeless people out here, I've seem a few here or there," said local parent, Erica Lightsey.

However, Lightsey says she'll continue to let her kids skate in the area.

"As long as they don't bother people, I just don't really see how they would harm anyone," Lightsey noted. 

Germany believes skateboarders should be treated the same as other athletes living on the Coast.

"Just like basketball courts, soccer fields, anything like that," said Germany. "It's just something we like to do."

Germany and his group of friends are hoping to petition several cities to build area skate parks. 

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