News: Kids go big at skateboard competition
Story by Pfc. David Walters
IWAKUNI, Japan - A skateboarding competition for kids took place at XtremeWorks Skate Park aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, Nov. 9, 2013.
Six skaters, ages 8-14, competed at the competition. Approximately 25 spectators watched and cheered throughout the event.
The first event was a two-minute timed run. Each skater performed as many tricks as they could, and after three runs, judges scored the skaters out of 10 and averaged the totals.
Spencer Boucher, 14, came in first place for the two minute timed run.
The second event was a skateboarding game called S.K.A.T.E., similar to the basketball game H.O.R.S.E.
J.C. Pearson, 12, won the game of S.K.A.T.E. in a close call with the letter “T.”
The third and final event was a best trick competition. Each skater had four chances to complete the most complicated trick they could perform.
Jayden Anderson, 10, finished first with an ollie 180 off the top of a 4-foot half pipe.
Each first place winner received a hat, with second and third placers winning a variety of stickers.
Lance Cpl. Jose Caldera, a data network specialist with Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron, coordinated and paid for food, drinks and prizes for the skaters and spectators.
Caldera started riding BMX at the age of 10, and grew into an avid rider progressing to downhill mountain biking, street and vert BMX.
“I did it because I wanted to do something that no one else has really done for the kids that I’m always around at the skate park,” said Caldera. “I wanted to volunteer my own time instead of someone asking me to volunteer my time. These kids are skating at a level that has yet to be recognized by the community or outside sources, and I haven’t seen any events like this in my year and a half here. I thought this would give them the recognition they deserve, by hosting an event that supports what they love to do.”
At the conclusion of the event, the skaters and some of the spectators showed their thanks by helping clear the area of trash and offering to help bring supplies to the next skate competition.
“I had tons of fun today, it was a great time,” said Boucher. “Just listening to music and skateboarding in an event like this, and watching everyone progress as well as yourself totally motivates you.”
Another skate competition is slated is slated to be held at XtremeWorks Skate Park in early spring. The event is open to skateboarders age 17 and younger to participate.