Let’s face it – skateboarders get a bad rap. They’re often unjustifiably criminalized for partaking in the sport when in fact, that aren’t harming anyone but themselves (and perhaps their parents’ medical insurance premiums). Skating is, in fact, a healthy form of exercise and a method throughwhich many kids, teens and young adults keep busy – therefore staying out of trouble. The problem is that often there isn’t anywhere for these skaters to go and so they skate down public streets, which is a big no-no.
Lucky for these board-wielding athletes, the smart folks of Tiverton realized that rather than punish these well-meaning daredevils, they should give them a safe space to skate. Bulgarmarsh Recreation Area now boasts a good-sized skate park that’s open to the public for skating, BMX riding and rollerblading. When I went to check it out on a Monday afternoon, there were 20 or so riders, most on skateboards, two on bikes, calmly taking turns on the concrete bowls and ramps. They encouraged each other, spoke quietly and behaved so as to flip that negative skater stereotype on its head.