By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Skaters just want places to fly
Faces and Places
Ronnie Woods, 15, turns his board over in the air. - photo by Photo by Alena Parker.
Names: Daniel Crary, 17, Anthony Miller, 17, Matthew Kipke, 18, Terry Wilson, 17, Ronnie Woods, 15, Chase Mullins, 15

Hobby: Skateboarding

How does the public view skateboarders? “People get the wrong idea. They think we’re all hoodlums, out there breaking stuff,” Crary said. “What happens is we’re skating it…but it’s been broken since we got there.”
“The cops will mess with you, say you’re defacing public property,” Wilson said.
“They tried to arrest us a few times,” Crary added.
How do motorists feel about you? “They’ll flip you off. They’ll blow the horn,” Wilson said.
“They’re jealous,” Kipke explained. “They can’t do it as good as us.”

Why do you skate in public areas? Why not just skate at home?
“The only thing we really need is concrete,” Crary said.
And the concrete in most neighborhoods is not just sidewalks or vacant lots. “To step up and be challenged on the skateboard, you need gaps,” Miller said.
The teens said they sometimes use abandoned wood for make-shift ramps.
“We skate with what we have.”

What do you say to people who don’t like to see it? “You all have your own hobbies,” Crary said. “It keeps me out of trouble. If I wasn’t doing this, I would be doing a lot more stuff.”

What do you do when you meet up with other skaters?
“We challenge each others’ skills, see who can do things the cleanest,” Crary said.
“A game of skate,” explained Wilson. “It’s like horse, but you just spell out skate. “Somebody does a trick. Another guy does a trick.”

How often do you skate? “Every day, if we can,” Crary said. “If the sun’s out and it’s not raining, you’re guaranteed to see us out there.”

Is there enough for kids your age to do? “Hinesville is a flat place that has [two] thing[s], a movie theater and Wal-Mart,” Crary said. “I mean, really, what are you going to do with a movie theater and Wal-Mart? Kids don’t have all this money and, well, this is a thing that’s free to do whenever, as long as it’s dry out.”

How did you get involved in skateboarding? “Half of my neighbors, they were skateboarders. I thought it was kind of cool looking and I picked up a board one day and loved it ever since,” said Crary, a three-year boarder.

Is skateboarding dangerous? “If you don’t think you can do something, then don’t try it,” Wilson said. “Don’t hate, go skate.”
“You can get hurt playing football,” Miller said.
But skinned knees or twisted ankles aren’t enough to keep them way.
“It’s just that it’s fun,” Miller said. “Once you’ve learned a trick…you just feel good.”
“It’s a good way to relax,” Crary added.
Sign up for our e-newsletters