HAMPSTEAD – For the past 10 to 15 years, Hampstead youngsters and their parents have tried to raise enough money to construct a skateboard park. The kids worked hard at cake sales, car washes and whatever opportunities for fundraising presented themselves and raised quite a lot of money, but a skate park never materialized.
The first group of young people, according to Wendy Kaye, worked for several years in the early 2000s but when they reached driving age, the skate park project lapsed. Kaye said the money languished until the next generation of youngsters interested in constructing a skate park came along. The original group raised close to $4,500 and the second wave of youngsters added another $1,600.
The plans eventually reached the Recreation Commission, which supported the effort and hoped to construct the skate park on a portion of newly cleared land at Depot Fields. However, the parcel proved unsuitable for a skate park and over the next few years, the project again slipped off the radar screen as the young people involved reached driving age.
Kaye said the decision was then made that a skate park was not going to happen in Hampstead and a better use for the money should be found. The group ultimately decided to contribute the money to the Make A Wish Foundation, and asked that it be used to grant a youngster’s wish for something to do with skateboarding.
Jason Tremblay, Director of Philanthropy for Make A Wish Foundation of New Hampshire, came to town to accept the $6,100 check from a group of young people and parents at the Hampstead Public Library. He said it was remarkable that the young people had made this decision and noted that would make a real difference in some youngster’s life.
Alex Salter expressed the sentiment felt by his peers at the event when he said, “This is really awesome that what we are doing can really make a difference for some young person.”
Kaye said, “I am glad we could do this because the boys, all of them in both groups, worked so hard to raise the money.”
Along with Kaye, another parent of the original group, Tina Marston, attended with her sons Connor and Kevin. Adam Schickling and Alex Salter of the second group were present. Kaye provided pizza, soda and cupcakes to mark the event.