Vail Daily letter: Act on youthful ideas | VailDaily.com

Vail Daily letter: Act on youthful ideas

The town of Vail has acted on an idea that emanated from and reflects our young people, and we should celebrate that. Two years ago Cameron Chaney, then a middle-school student, started talking with Chad Young of the Vail Recreation District about his design for a skatepark. Cameron tirelessly advocated the project and, to the Town Council’s credit, the idea took hold. The fact that the town listened to a local student’s idea is absolutely wonderful.

Today the space between the north and south sides of the Lionshead parking structure is a skate park with beautiful mosaics by Washington, D.C.-based artist Valerie Theberge. What was once an overlooked, under-utilized space is now a special place with an active, dynamic artistic energy. The space has a welcoming feeling that lets kids, adults, girls and boys spend hours skating together. People of all abilities and spectators are welcome. The kids seem to take turns out of some natural awareness for each other, and the skate community has a gentle yet firm way of teaching etiquette. Participants of different ability levels encourage each other and praise progress. Similarly, participants learn skills from other skaters, but always find their own style. The park is a recipe for positive sharing without judgment.

The energy that we generate in a lifetime ― even a short lifetime ― is sometimes remembered on signs, benches and plaques around our communities. What kind of energy, you might ask, inspires others to remember souls who have departed? We are so proud that the skate park, which was designed by a community of skaters of all ages, will be named after our son Zeke, a friend of Cameron. What is the magnitude of the impact that 15-year old kids can have on their community? Come and find out at the opening of the Zeke M. Pierce Skatepark on Sept. 10 from 9:30 to 11 a.m.

All are welcome. We will celebrate/dedicate the skate park with a Hawaiian blessing remember Zeke, congratulate Cameron, and celebrate how youth can contribute to our community.

The Pierce family