PCM Skatepark opens

Published 3:47 am Sunday, February 3, 2008

By Staff
More than 100 sign-up to skate
By CLAUD HODGES, Senior Reporter
Skateboarders rolled onto the Patrick Cochran Memorial Skatepark immediately after the ribbon was cut on Saturday at noon.
Cochran was a Washington resident who was killed in an automobile collision on Aug. 30, 2003. He was 13 when he died.
William Cochran said his son would “love” the skatepark.
Without the community, he said the skatepark would have never come to fruition.
Cochran said the skatepark was the culmination of a lot of hard work by the community and shows what the people of a small town can accomplish.
The 8,000-square-foot skatepark is designed with smooth concrete curves, hills, steps, bowls and rails for skateboarders to challenge themselves on their boards.
In addition to his father, Cochran’s mother, Cindy, his brother, Kyle, and his sister, Emily, were at the skatepark opening. Also at the event were his grandparents, Hilda and Dan Wallace, Gretchen and Heber Windley, and Betty and Bill Cochran.
Kristi Hardison, events and facilities coordinator for the city’s recreation department and chairwoman of the skatepark committee that oversees its development, said she was excited to see people of all ages having a grand time at the skatepark.
Mobley said the skatepark is an ongoing project. He said plans are in the making for a sidewalk to be constructed on the park’s perimeter and landscaping to beautify the park.
The Washington Optimist Club and a group of volunteers raised at least $110,000 to help pay for the park. The city has committed $85,000 to the project. Beaufort County has appropriated $20,000. Cochran’s family has been instrumental in helping raise money for the skatepark.
In March 2007, the Washington City Council voted unanimously to award a construction contract not to exceed $210,000 to California Skateparks and a $7,000 contract for skatepark-construction management to Wally Hollyday.
To help pay for the skatepark, some people, businesses and organizations bought brick pavers that will become a part of the skatepark. To raise money for the project the skatepark committee sells T-shirts, hoodies and monogrammed polo shirts that have the skatepark’s logo.
Mobley said there have been generous donations in kind from several members, businesses and organizations in the community.
Anyone interested in providing a paver for the skatepark or in buying T-shirts, hoodies or monogrammed polo shirts should contact Hardison at (252) 975-9367, extension 223.