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La Pine man donating half-pipe to temporary skate park

(Update: Adding video, comments from La Pine mayor, Park and Rec board member and Cheatham)

BEND, Ore (KTVZ) -- The La Pine Skate Park was recently relocated to a new spot, closer to the La Pine Library.

Now, it's also getting a new, free piece of equipment -- a big one.

La Pine resident Jeff Cheatham is donating his custom-built half-pipe to the park. He built the 27-foot half-pipe himself and keeps it in his backyard.

"As I got older, it was fun to have my friends over, and we decided to have a ramp at my house," Cheatham told NewsChannel 21 on Wednesday.

But now, his days on the ramp are behind him.

"My body is telling me that it doesn't like skateboarding anymore," Cheatham said.

But that doesn't mean the ramp's days are numbered.

For the last six years, Cheatham has had the half-pipe in his backyard. But pretty soon, he's going to be taking it apart and moving it to the new site of the La Pine Skate Park.

The park’s relocation within Frontier Park saved it from potentially being taken down.

"We didn't want to just get rid of the skate park," said Molly Baker Ray, a member of the La Pine Park and Recreation Board of Directors. "We understand that the kids and even the adults that come out here at the skate park. We need to make sure it's here for them."

With many children learning remotely, and thus having more free time, La Pine Mayor Daniel Richer said the park provides them a place to play outside, safely.

"It allows them to be responsible in our park, and we appreciate having a place for them to enjoy themselves," Richer said.

And Cheatham thinks skating can also teach valuable lessons.

"Skateboarding makes good humans, in my opinion,” he said. “Because skateboarding will beat you down, and it will make you fall down and fall down and fall down, and try it again and again and again -- until you get it."

Cheatham said he hopes the current wooden park will soon make way for a more permanent concrete skate park, like others around Central Oregon.

Central Oregon / La Pine / Sports / Top Stories
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Jack Hirsh

Jack Hirsh is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Jack here.

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