Things at Forest Park’s new skate park aren’t always what they seem.
Though you might think you see a park bench off toward the side, think twice before you take a seat and start reading the paper. What you see is actually a component from the Skatewave Urban Series, a group of obstacles designed to replicate those elements of everyday city life that skaters who aren’t fortunate enough to live near a skate park often use to hone their skills.
These components, alongside more traditional quarter pipes, spines, banks, launch ramps and more, were installed over the last couple weeks at the Park District of Forest Park’s Harrison Street headquarters, at the former site of the basketball courts.
The district will host an official grand opening for the park on Saturday, June 3 at 1 p.m. The park will be named the Bud Mohr Skate Park in honor of the late Henry E. Bud Mohr and H.J. Mohr and Sons Co., which donated the concrete surface for the park.
“We thought we’d just use asphalt, which would have cost about $10,000. But after we saw all the equipment and talked to other parks, we learned that the preferred surface is concrete, but that’s much more expensive,” said Park District Executive Director David Novak.
H.J. Mohr donated about $20,000 worth of concrete, and Dolly Mohr, Bud’s granddaughter, also reached out to other area companies to get another $12,000 in donations for the park, including cement, wire mesh, and signage, according to Novak.
Bud’s widow, Dolly Mohr, along with other members of the family, is expected to attend the opening ceremony, during which they will be presented with a framed resolution commemorating the dedication of the skate park.
Also scheduled to attend is Dayne Brummet, a professional skater hailing from Lake Zurich, who will conduct a demonstration using the park’s new equipment, manufactured by the Minnesota-based Landscape Structures, Inc. The company also manufactured the playground equipment found in the park’s “Tot Lot.”
Brummet, 27, has been skating for 17 years, and has competed everywhere from California to Germany to Australia in events including the World Street Final, Vans Triple Crown, The Gravity Games, and the Xbox World Championship of Skateboarding.
Landscape Structures’ Skatewave 3.0 equipment line is designed as a “modular” system, allowing the park the flexibility to add on or reassemble its skating equipment to create different designs and added obstacles.
The skate park will be unsupervised, though the park district recommends the use of equipment including helmets, elbow pads and knee pads.
According to Novak, the district’s insurance provider recommended that the park be left unsupervised to reduce liability.
The skate park will close each day at dusk.
No smoking, eating or drinking is allowed in the skate park, and skaters cannot bring in their own ramps or other skating obstacles. Glass objects and containers are also not allowed.
Bicycles will not be allowed in the skate park, as according to Novak they create a safety hazard for the skaters and a greater risk of injury on the ramps.