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150 Skaters Are Expected

At Union Hills Classic

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Poster of Union Hill Classic Event.
Competitive Divisions Include Skaters From Ages 3 to 40; Some Of The Sponsored Riders May Also Compete In April’s PHXAM Contest

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By Chris G. Braswell
Modern Times Magazine

Jan. 11, 2014 — It’s not too late to double-check your bearings and get registered to shred concrete at next Saturday’s Union Hills Classic Skateboard Contest up in Glendale.

The event is at the Foothills SK8 Court Plaza at 5708 W. Union Hills Drive. Check-in will be at 9 a.m., and the contest begins at 10.

The 150 skaters are expected to vary in age from 3 to 40, according to Laura Martin of Cowtown Skateboards. The event will have eight competitive divisions: ages 6 to 9 (Pee Wee division); ages 10 to 12; ages 13 to 15; and 16 and up. Categories also include advanced/sponsored riders, masters, and the women’s division.

The competition will occur in a jam format comprising three-minute/four-rider sorties, she said.

The venue (which is a Glendale city park, open daily from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.) is at the corner of 57th Avenue and Union Hills Drive. Its features include a 5-foot street-scape bowl with grinding and obstacle infrastructure to include a fun box and double bumps; a five-foot bowl with center spine; a nine-foot, two-level bowl; and bleachers for spectators and ramadas for shade.

“It is a good place for the youth to go; they get to skate and hang out, and they aren’t doing things that they shouldn’t be doing,” said Marcheta Strunk of the City of Glendale’s public information office.

The skatepark is a drug-free, alcohol-free, and abusive language-free zone. Bicycles, scooters, boards bigger than 34 inches, speed skates, and all types of motorized vehicles are not allowed inside the fence. Helmets, knee and elbow pads, wrist guards, and other protective gear are strongly recommended for all riders anytime.

“We have the PHXAM event coming in April. This (the Union Hills event) is not related, but it gives locals a chance to compete as the amateurs do in April,” Martin said. “Sponsored riders sometimes move on to the amateur event.”

The PHXAM amateur skateboard contest is slated for April 5 to 6 at the Desert West Skateboard Plaza in Phoenix, 6602 W. Encanto Blvd. For more information, visit http://www.PHXAM.com.

These local contests are important because they build community, and are also, of course, lots of fun, she said.

It does not cost any money to enter the contest, but there are limited spots, and early registration is available at any of the greater Phoenix metro’s Cowtown Skateboards store locations.

The Union Hills Classic 2014 flyer can be downloaded at http://www.cowtownskateboards.com/news_detail.cfm?ID=491.

Chris G. Braswell is the managing editor of Modern Times Magazine. He can be reached at cbraswell@moderntimesmagazine.com.
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