12 The Chronicle February 27 - March 5, 2018 chronicle.durhamcollege.ca Community Oshawa skatepark not just for skateboards Shana Fillatrau The Chronicle To some, a skatepark just seems like a slab of concrete, but to others, it’s an important part of their world. David Galloway, a long-time volunteer at Skatelife, a faith-based organization that works with local skateboarders in different communities across Canada, is at the North Oshawa skatepark at least once a week. Galloway’s favourite moments from the park are conversations. He said, “Sometimes I show up, especially when there are a lot of guys here, and guys I know, I don’t even necessarily get on my skateboard right away. I’m just making rounds talking to people.” It’s not always about the skateboarding, he said, but more just connecting with people. Treflips, nose grinds and varial heels are all terms you would hear and tricks you would see at the North Oshawa skatepark. It is a place for the young, the old - the beginners and also, the professionals. The 10,000 square foot skatepark opened in 2010. The park was built by New Line Skateparks, a municipal skatepark design and construction company, who have finished over 200 projects. The park includes, rails, manual pads, hubbas and quarter pipes, as well as space to pump in order for the skaters to keep their momentum. Mississaugas of Scugog Island: The skatepark is on the land of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island. After the American Revolution, the British began settling more in Canada, on Indigenous land. Through the William’s Treaty of 1923, the Ontario government took possession of large amounts of land from Indigenous peoples, including the Mississaugas of Scugog Island. The word Oshawa is actually of Indigenous descent, meaning, “That point at the crossing of the stream where the canoe was exchanged for the trail,” according to Lisa Terech of the Oshawa Museum. Skatepark construction 101: Mitchell Wiskel, an Oshawa parks development supervisor, says planning to build a skatepark is similar to any other parks’ development project. “In the case of a skatepark, “he said,” we would typically start off by determining if there’s a need for the city through surveys or outside studies.” Skateparks are benefical to city’s urban development. While being relatively inexpensive, the parks give youth a place to spend their time productively at and it promotes physical activity. Once it’s determined there is a need for the skatepark, parks development would then decide what the best location is. After that, he said, they would then focus on the design of the park After that, an expert skatepark designer has to be brought in. Wiskel said, a request for proposal (RFP) is sent out. Designers pitch their ideas and skills to parks development. This would be contracted out and parks development oversees this process Another RFP is sent out to contractors, but their pitch is based on price, where parks development hires the least expensive, but qualified contractor. After the design is finished, parks development hires general contractors to build the park. Parks and development decides what company would be hired, as well as the construction process itself. Once the skatepark is finished, parks development ends their involvement and the city’s parks operation staff looks after the facility. He said, parks and development is only brought back onto the project if something broke or the park was to be renovated. Other duties of parks development include, organizing public consultations (whether that be through city hall meetings, local surveys or speaking to interest groups - skateboarders), speaking to other city departments that may have a stake in the process and fiscal responsibilities. He said, the most significant things to remember is that, “It’s so Shana Fillatrau The Chronicle Kyelle Hatherly at the North Oshawa skatepark. important to stay involved and to stay involved with the development side of things for Oshawa, because if we didn’t have that involvement, from a public standpoint, there wouldn’t be that buy-in, through the process.” Wiskell says, “so, by having that sort of strong community feedback, through consolation and what not, we can ultimately build much better facilities because we’re building for exactly what those users want.” A skater’s experience: Kyelle Hatherly started skating Photograph by Shana Fillatrau Learn more about Donevan’s skate camp Children can try something new and hop on a skateboard over at Donevan Recreation Complex. Seven to 13-year-olds can share the public park on camp days through July to the beginning of September. According to Andrea Preston, the supervisor of recreation programs at Donevan, the campers learn skateboard tricks so they are mainly spending time with staff to practice their newly acquired skills. She said, “As well as skateboarding, they also do camp games, songs and those sorts of things and then they also have a recreation swim as well every day.” Brendan Browne, the manager of programs and facilities with the city, said a problem with the camp is finding the right staff. “I think a challenge that we find as a staff or as a supervisor or managers overseeing is actually, where we’re talking about the actual counsellors who run the program,” he said, “so finding a qualified staff person who has the skills, able to work with children, I know we always had difficulty finding that quality of a counsellor.” Another issue is interested campers. Skateboarding isn’t as popular with the children as it used to be. Preston said, “The skateboarding world, isn’t as big as it used to be, scootering is taking over.” The next camp will start this summer. in 1986. He stopped when he started high school. Back in the 80’s, Hatherly said skateboarding was a fad, and he wanted to try it. Three years ago, Hatherly picked up the board again, since he didn’t have a license and needed a way to get around. Skateboarding is a healthier alternative to motor transportation and is better for the alternative. Hatherly says he didn’t have many skateparks around when he was a younger, so when he saw the North Oshawa skatepark, he wanted to try it out. He started coming to the park three years ago when he started skating again. His favourite part of the park is the funbox (a manual pad), but he said, “Yeah, I think it should be bigger, but there’s not really space to add it unless they took out some of the parking lot or something, but yeah, it’s a little small. Hatherly tries to make it to the park every day he has off from work. Who is David Galloway and what is Skatelife?: David Galloway started skating in 1988. He went to O’Neill CVI where he found his passion. One day he saw other teenagers doing bonelesses down a set of stairs. Even though he said it was a small set of stairs, “to me they were flying through the air and I’m like, ‘man, I want to be a part of that.’” Galloway says the North Oshawa skatepark is an integral part of his skating experience. He said he was there skating at the park before it officially opened. He tries to be at the park at least once a week, but tries for several times a week. Galloway says he wants a flatbar added to the park. He says he heard that other people feel the same. He started volunteering at Skatelife in 1997 in British Columbia, while attending school in Abbortsford. His school gave credits for volunteer hours, so he joined when he saw Skatelife being advertised in a local skateshop. Skatelife is a non-profit, faithbased organization that works with local skateboarders in different communities across Canada. SkateLife promotes community and friendships. They hold weekly skate clubs where local skaters can meet up, spend time together, learn new tricks, film, etc. Galloway says Skatelife focuses heavily on the 13-18-year-old age range, but the organization also caters to younger children, as well as adults. His favourite part is connecting with the skaters. “Really working with the young adult skaters, being a mentor to them, just helping them to make positive life choices, career paths.” He said, “some of these guys don’t have a positive male figure in their life, and I feel that’s really important, just to be that to those guys.” Looking at the park, you wouldn’t know the stories of the people who skate there, but taking the time to learn more can be interesting and it has an impact on people in the community.
Community chronicle.durhamcollege.ca February 27 - March 5, 2018 The Chronicle 13 'I wouldn't be here if it hadn't been for dialysis and a transplant' Kirsten Jerry The Chronicle Six people all with a similar experiences to share. The six, who have either donated a kidney, received a transplant, or have had a family member affected by kidney disease, shared their stories at the fifth annual Kidney Foundation Fundraising and Awareness Luncheon at the Holiday Gardens Slovenian Country Club in Pickering on Feb. 10. There was a panel discussion where the following questions were aked: How did you discover you had kidney disease? What where the main challenges you faced when transitioning to being on dialysis? Can you travel while on dialysis and what was that like? The event offered support, fun, awareness and fundraising opportunities for the Kidney Foundation Canada. “I wouldn’t be here if it hadn’t been for dialysis and a transplant,” said panelist Pat Howell, 84, speaking of her own experience with kidney disease. Howell has been coming to the lunch for three years. She was diagnosed with kidney disease in 2000 and received her transplant in 2004. The Kidney Foundation offered support. Howell also has three sons who have each been given transplants. “When Pat started the only educational material was from the Kidney Foundation,” said attendee Colleen Harrison, 60, a nurse who has been involved with the renal program, a program for those with kidney disease who need dialysis, for 26 years. “The Kidney Foundation offered support. It offered education materials and today it still does the same thing.” Harrison said while there are now many manuals for dialysis treatment, she still uses the one produced by the Kidney Foundation. “It’s the best manual out there,” she said. Lisa Huhn, 51, is also a kidney recipient. She has endured many medical challenges. Huhn was not a panelist but attended the event. Her first transplant came from her mother in 1995. Unfortunately, her body rejected that kidney. She later received a kidney and pancreas transplant on May 2, 1997 and developed a rare virus afterwards. She lost the kidney from that transplant around 2000 and had another pancreas transplant in 2008, which she lost in 2014. Later in 2014 Huhn developed cancer allegedly from the use of anti-injection drugs for 17 years and went through chemotherapy treatments, losing her hair. Her hair has since grown back. She has also had the rare privilege of meeting her donor, a then 10-year-old boy named Ryan. Panelist Joan Bourque, 68, who donated a kidney to her daughter seven years ago, also attended. The lunch featured kidney-friendly options, dessert, including an ice cream bar, face painting, guest speakers and a dance demonstration and lesson given by Tyler Gordon and Anna Barsch of Arthur Murray Dance Centres in Ajax. Photograph by Kirsten Jerry Isabella Jones, 13 months, and her mother, transplant recipient Kristy Jones, 38, dancing at the fifth annual Kidney Foundation Fundraising and Awareness Luncheon. History and scouting fun meet at Camp Samac Sam McLaughlin's generous gift to Oshawa Scouts Kirsten Jerry The Chronicle “I was just flabbergasted when he pulled out money and gave it to me,” recalled Jamie Lovell, 48, camp warden at Camp Samac, a Scouts Canada camp in Oshawa. Lovell remembered a generous act from someone impacted by Camp Samac when he went to pay for and pick up an order of pellet guns for the camp’s shooting range. “There happened to be a gentleman there buying some guns as well,” Lovell said. “As soon as he overheard where I was from, he actually gave me money to pay for one of the guns as a donation.” Lovell said the man didn’t want a tax receipt for his donation, he just wanted to help the camp because he had gone to Camp Samac himself as a child. Camp Samac, as well as being a Scout camp, is full of historical significance for Oshawa. Sam McLaughlin, who founded General Motors with William Durant, donated the part of Camp Samac’s property once known as Brookside Park, to the Scouts in 1943. It officially opened on September 5, 1946. McLaughlin bought more property in 1963 from George James, a man who had an asphalt plant right next to the camp on the land McLaughlin bought. He purchased more land from a Ross E. Lee in August 1965, according to the book Camp Samac History by Robert Holden. The main entrance to the camp is at 1711 Simcoe Street North. Camp Samac is the headquarters of the White Pine Council, which has territory along the border of Algonquin and from Pickering to Napanee. There are 20 councils involved in Scouts Canada. While Dave Reid, 68, chair of Photograph by Kirsten Jerry (From left) Dave Reid, 68, chair of the camp committee, and Jamie Lovell, 48, camp warden of Camp Samac in the board room. the camp committee, doesn’t know where scouts went for their activities before Camp Samac was created, he recalls spending his time with the scouts in fields and provincial parks as a boy. He is not the only one in Oshawa who was with the scouts. “There are different companies, different individuals in Oshawa,” Reid said, “and they have fond memories of coming here as a kid.” For example, Reid recalled going to get a pizza one day, when someone called out “Hi Lightning!” Lightning was his camp name from when he was a beaver leader. The scout had grown up, but remembered his time at Camp Samac. The scouts are divided into five groups - beavers, cubs, scouts, adventure and rover scouts. Reid said, “Having fun and learning, at the same time, are the main objectives for all the groups.” Camp Samac gets visitors from age 5-26 and from many places. Lovell said groups have come from as far England and China to visit Samac. “We’re probably one of the busiest camps in Ontario,” he said. The camp is open year-round. The camp’s pool, which is run by the City, is open in the summer. Campers can access the pool for free. There is also canoeing, a sports field, a chapel, hiking trails, cabins and tenting areas. In winter, scout groups are able to rent cabins. Leaders often plan activities in advance. Reid said the camp offers a “program in a box” for leaders. The program is complete with instructions and all the materials needed for the activity. McLaughlin donated Camp Samac to the Scouts 75 years ago and the property continues to thrive today.