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Inline Skate School

Contact: SkateNow@att.net
or call (801)944-5516

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FRIDAY Nite Roll!
visit the new site:

Break Free Skate 5K
Inline Race n' Roll

SAT, SEPT 15, 2007

5K Inline Skate

SAT, JUNE 16, 2007
5K inline Race
SAT, JULY 21, 2007


National Guard
5K charity
Inline Skate Race


Start the Grill!
74 mile Skate Tour

Coeur d'Alene Idaho
JULY 2007


SEPTEMBER 2007: UPDATES:  Please check the Fri Nite Roll blog for updates and current FNS info.

                                                                    click here:

** WEST JORDAN, UTAH:  5K Inline Race **
The Race to End Domestic Violence
4 races 4 money

SATURDAY, September 15, 2007: 8:45am

INLINE SKATING EVENT! Your Last Chance to earn some Cash!  This is the 4th of 4 races in the ACCESS MORTGAGE-MARC WESTERN  Inline Race Series, skaters compete for cash purse  and prizes! This event is part of the "BREAK FREE 5K SKATE"  INLINE SKATING EVENT, and you will be able to skate your way to the finish and maybe, just maybe, skate away with some easy money!!

Proceeds from event registrations and dontations go towards helping put a stop to domestic violence, a fundraiser for the West Jordan Victim Assistance Program.  Help put a stop to domestic violence. 

A special thanks to the City of West Jordan, Victims Assistance Program, and West Jordan City Motor Patrol for their support of the skating event, and their gracious help in making this event happen. 

Cash Purse Prizes will be given at each 5K inline skate race event for the Top 3 Men & Top 3 Women overall finishers: $100(1st place) - $50(2nd place) - $25(3rd place).  

Medal Awards: for 1-2-3 place Mens' and Women's Age Groups.
Raffle Prizes: cool skate stuff to be given away from our event sponsors!
EVENT:  5K SKATE Race, Roll, and Stroll - open to anyone on skates. 
DATE:  Saturday, SETEMBER 15th, 2007
TIME:  8:45am
LOCATION:  West Jordan  UT.
START LINE: Approx 12500 South (Pioneer Rd) & 2200 West
COURSE MAP:  see below or visit:   http://www.geocities.com/breakfreerun/ map

ENTRY FEE:  $15.00 per person, individual rate.
NEW!  FAMILY RATE:  $15 for the 1st family member, and $10 for each additional family member.
Late Registration: $20
per person, individual rate. and $15 for family rate.  

No registration day of event, sorry, no exceptions.
Fee Includes T-shirt and goody bag.


Special Thanks to our event Sponsors:
Access Mortgage - Marc Western and  'the SkateNow shop', LuiginoRacing USA, MATTER Wheels, K2, and RAPs.

BREAK FREE RACE RESULTS:    Saturday, September 15th, 2007: 
Warm Temps of 62 degrees were a welcome change from last years 39 degree start.  A strong southerly wind made for slightly slower overall times, but gave way to a fast ride north with the tail wind.   Andrew Love  had mixed emotins abotu his 2nd place win.  In looking back on the womings event he beleives up to early in the sprint costs him time to Brandon Andrews, a former indoor inlines skate now turned ice speedskater.  Both top guys had a cat- mouse race throughout the 5K course, keeping things lively. Coming into the final 1/4 mile loop road, where passing is nearly impossible with narrowed sections of road, Andrew made his move, shortly after feeling Andrew closing the small gap.  In the women's race,  Stephani Combs skated in alone to the finish with Alejandra just a few seconds off her time. 

This course is unique in that it is virtually flat and very fast. Due to the course routing, it is a bit longer than a true 5K.

Overall Place Mens Overall TIME BIB # Last First  Age Age Div Place
1 1 10:30:30 116 Brandon Andrews 20-29 1
2 2 10:31.8 100 Love Andrew 30-39 1
5 3 12:02.1 101 Anthony Gilbert 20-29 2
6 4 14:12.9 104 Steve Johnson 30-39 2
7 5 15:15.0 109 Steve Fernow 50-59 1
8 6 15:15.9 105 Kevin Atkinson 30-39 3
11 7 17:21.6 102 Larry  Call 50-59 2
12 8 18:39.5 103 Kyle Call 11-19 1

Overall Place Womens Overall TIME BIB # Last First  Age Age Div Place
3 1 11:21.0 112 Stephani Combs 11-19 1
4 2 11:34.7 110 alejandra mates 30-39 1
9 3 15:46.2 115 Archuletta Chanelle 11-19 2
10 4 16:57.0 106 jessica love 30-39 2
13 5 21:52.2 108 megan jones 30-39 1
14 6 22.57.8 107 Joanne Cloud 40-49 3
15 7 24:44.9 114 brenda mossbarger-rands 30-39 2
16 8 ? 117 Jana Mitchelle 20-29 1
17 9 ? 111 sonja Soo hoo 30-39 ?
18 10 dns 113 amy buckley keate 30-39  


Top Male & Female Overall Winners

Top Male Overall Winners

Top Female Overall Winners

* SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH:  5K Inline Race *

4 races 4 money

SATURDAY, JUNE 16th, 2007:  7:40am


Because you skate..... and, because you like to go FAST!!

This summer YOU could skate away with easy money!

INLINE SKATING EVENT! This is the 1st of 4 races in the ACCESS MORTGAGE-MARC WESTERN inline Race Series, skaters compete for cash purse prizes! This event is part of the "SALT LAKE GETS FIT!" event, skate your way to the finish line and maybe, just maybe, skate away with some easy money!!

Cash Purse Prizes will be given at each 5K inline race event for the Top 3 Men & Top 3 Women overall finishers: $100(1st place) - $50(2nd place) - $25(3rd place). 
Medals:  finishers medals.

5K SKATE Race,  Roll, and Stroll - open to anyone on skates.  
Saturday, June 16th, 2007
Liberty Park ,Salt Lake City, UT: (entrance: 700 East & 900 South)

ENTRY FEE:  $10 on/before Thursday, June 14, 6:00pm.  After 6:00pm, on Thursday, June 14 entry fee goes to up $20. No registration day of event.  Fee Includes T-shirt and timing chip use.
REGISTRATION:  Online at Active.com or send check, made payable to:  SkateNow, llc / 3663 E. Capstone Ave. / Salt Lake City, UT 84121 - All Mail-in payments must be received by:  June 14th.

TIMING CHIPS:  skaters will receive a timing chip that must be used in order to place you in the event. Timing chips must be returned at completion of event.

Please contact SkateNow for more details:  skatenow@att.net / 801-944-5516 


Let's make this a summer of skating to remember!

See you Skating!
         Eric & Kim Kraan

                     owner's, 'SkateNow, llc

A special thanks to the City of Salt Lake for their support of the skating event, and their gracious help in making this event happen under such short notice.  And, many more thanks to our event Sponsors:  Access Mortgage - Marc Western and  'the SkateNow shop'.

Thanks to everyone who came out to participate in the race, and to everyone gave their time to volunteer.  Again, we would like to express our apologies regarding any finish line confusion. Also, we would like to take this opportunitty to reminded event participants that it is imperative that you be in the Starting Area for Race Instructions at least 4-5 minutes before the start of the event. 

RESULTS: Since there was no means to decipher actual times due to the number of skaters that missed the finish stretch, we resolved to cancel awarding any prize money in respect to fairness of all participants, and offered finishers medals in lieu of place medals.  This portion of the prize money will now be spread over the next three races.
The next race will be held at Draper Park:  Saturday, July 21. 

TIMING CHIPS: If you did not turn in your timing chips please bring mail them back directly. If you do not turn them in you will be billed by the timing company for $30. 

T-SHIRTS & MEDALS: anyone who did not pick up their event t-shirt and finsihers medal may contact SkateNow to make arrangements for pick up.  After July 20, all non-claimed medals and t-shirt will be given to local charity.

PICTURES:  if you took any pics of the event please share.  Submitt pics to skatenow@att.net  and we will post them here.

Thanks again everyone for coming out and supporting skating sports!

    Eric and Kim Kraan 

** DRAPER, UTAH:  5K Inline Race **

4 races 4 money

SATURDAY, JULY 21, 2007: 6:45am
5K Inline Skate



Because you skate..... and, because you like to go FAST!!

This summer YOU could skate away with easy money!

INLINE SKATING EVENT! This is the 2nd of 4 races in the ACCESS MORTGAGE-MARC WESTERN inline Race Series, skaters compete for cash purse prizes! This event is part of the "DRAPER DAYS" event , and you will be able to skate your way to the finish and maybe, just maybe, skate away with some easy money!!

Cash Purse Prizes will be given at each 5K inline race event for the Top 3 Men & Top 3 Women overall finishers: $100(1st place) - $50(2nd place) - $25(3rd place). 

Medal Awards: for 1-2-3 place Mens' and Women's Age Groups.
Raffle Prizes: cool skate stuff to be given away from our event sponsors! 

Pancake breakfast following event, then enjoy the Draper Day's festivities afterwards!

5K SKATE Race,  Roll, and Stroll - open to anyone on skates.  
Saturday, July 21st, 2007
Draper Park, UT.
13800 South & 1300 East
Late Registration: July 18-20: Entry fee goes to up $25 on July 18th.
No registration day of event, sorry, no exceptions. 

Fee Includes T-shirt and goody bag.

REGISTRATION:  Online at SPORTSNUTS  or send check, made payable to:  SkateNow, llc / 3663 E. Capstone Ave. / Salt Lake City, UT 84121 -
All fees are non-refundable.

Please contact SkateNow for more details:  skatenow@att.net / 801-944-5516 

Let's make this a summer of skating to remember!

See you Skating!
         Eric & Kim Kraan

                     owner's, 'SkateNow, llc




July 21, 2007:  10:07am   RACE RESULTS:

83°'s at 5:00am and strong winds blowing out of east-south east, made for the warmest and fastest (tailwind) race this course has had yet to offer skaters.  Overall top men's skater, Andrew Love, also Draper Days 2006 winner,  sailed across the finish line, winds pushing him thru the chute setting a new course record time of 7:20:85, dropping over 1:10 off his previous course time (8:24:60).  And, the Personal Best's did not stop there.  John Loquia(07:21:69) and Mike Stein (07:35:95) hunted down 2nd and 3rd postions,  while James(Clay) and Uel (
uel knocked 0:45 off his 2006 course time) closed in behind them grabbing 4th and 5th postions.  

In the women's divison, overall top women's skater, Stephani Combs (
07:39:77) captured her win in course record time for women skaters.   Alejandra Mates (09:38:31), took 2nd along with a bit of road rash after taking spill off the first turn, but no worries. Brittany Heise (10:10:54), Salt City Derby's very own NOS, captured 3rd postion. 

The top 3 overall men and women skaters shared some sweet cash from the purse sponsored by Access Mortgage-Marc Western, and there were lot's of give-a-way prizes from skate event sponosors raffled off to all the skaters. I shared a moment afterwards with overall winner,  Andrew Love, buying him a pancake breakfast in the park (the least I could do for him, he was still ridingn high on adrenalin). We talked about our favorite topic: skating, and looked ahead to the 2 other skate races we have in the summer series. 

The course was exceptionally fast with a consitent tailwind that made for exciting record course times. The downside to speed is that it can be troublesome, particulary when you combine a fast downhill with a right turn, then add into the mix an unknown, say for instance: a handful of unexpected lesiurely cyclsits.   Unfortunately, a few skaters took to the pavement during the turn from 13800 South to Fort Street, partly due to cyclist interfering with the race. Cyclists had rode thru the start line with only less than  a minute to go. 
When they came thru the start staging area, they were again instructed to clear the course, keep left, and stay left.  They muttered something about how skaters would not catch up to them.....they were wrong!  The lead pack had to divert around them at speeds of 30-35 mph (top speed was clocked at 37mph) on the downhill before the turn, and in the right turn onto Fort Street a skater got taken out trying to avoid a cylcist on the course making the same turn north.  As result the young man, and very experienced skater, landed himself in the hospital this morning.  It's unfortunate that this group of cyclists knowingly rode through closed roads, ignored signage, and verbal instructions and warnings, then litterally blew through the startline of our event, with an elitist attitude of having every right to be there. Under special event permitting the road access was shut down and closed to though cars/traffic (cyclist included) for the participants safety. Those [cyclist] that interfered with the race should be cited for violation of entering closed roads, and causing undue harm to a skater.  We have video of the 12 cyclists  passing thru the start line when we were counting down the start with 30 seconds or less to go. With that, we will submitt those pictures to the local news media and ask for names, or if nothing else to make a clear point to cyclist and others that poor judgement in passing thru an event start line was not only disrespectful, but dangerous to participants. 

We hope the future we can bring more awareness about inline speed skating to the community and pulic eye. Inline Skate racing is very serious and speeds are obtained of  well over 30-35 mph on downhills, such as the hill coming west on 13800 South to Fort Str. in Draper.   As skaters we assume inherent risks associated with our choice of sport, but during competion events we never exepect our safety to be jepordized by cycling groups putzing along the course thru the midst of our event.  Had the cyclsit that morning had any sense of their own legal responsiblity as riders [reference: Utah  motor vehicle code and cyclist repsonsibility code], they would have made a point to stop or get out of the way "as instructed" and not interfered with the event.  Instead, they blatantly chose to be oblivious to it all, with an attitude.  Sadly enough, the value of bad decison making equates to hosital bills and healing time for the young skater.   We all send prayers and wishes for the young skater to heal up fast and come back soon!! 

Shirts and Medals:  If you did not receive an event shirt, you may pick it up at Salt Lake Running Co. in Draper [1132 E Draper Parkway / Ph: 801-676-0844] after July 28, or contact SkateNow to make other arrangements.  Medals:  If you placed in your age division and did not receive your medal, please contact SkateNow to arrange to pick it up. 

A huge mega-super-sized thank you goes out to participants and volunteers, and family and friends that came out to make this event a sucess.  A special thanks to the City of Draper, and Draper City Motor Patrol for their gracious support of our 4th year for hosting the skating event.  Please look for a copy of the Deseret News  - the Top 3 Men & Women Skaters were interviewd and photographed - this is just the kind of media support our sport needs!! 

See you Skating!
        Kim & Eric Kraan


Overall Place TIME BIB # Last First  Age Div Place
1 07:39:77 3827 Combs Stephani 11-19 1
2 09:38:31 3825 Mates Alejandra 30-39 1
3 10:10:54 3829 Heise brittney 20-29 1
4 12:04:22 3814 Archuletta Chanelle 11-19 2
5 12:49:07 3831 Love Jessica 30-39 2
6 13:25:05 3868 Jimerson Larissa 30-39 3
7 13:43:91 3826 Cloud Joanne 40-49 1
8 16:15:07 3817 Young Leah 30-39 4
9 22:53:82 3870 Huntington Angela 30-39 5

Overall Place TIME BIB # Last First  Age Div Place
1 07:20:85 3811 Love Andrew 30-39 1
2 07:21:69 3864 Loquai john 20-29 1
3 07:35:95 3866 Stein Mike 20-29 2
4 07:39:15 3867 Cholewinski James 20-29 3
5 07:42:14 3812 Archulleta Uel 30-39 2
6 07:57:50 3869 Oswald Brian 30-39 3
7 08:27:00 3828 Lineback Eric 40-49 1
8 08:33:06 3862 Lopez Inacio 30-39 4
9 09:05:44 3820 Jarvis Michael 30-39 5
10 09:06:31 3810 Nahrwold  Paul 11-19 1
11 09:16:03 3830 Jackson Jay 40-49 2
12 10:09:96 3865 Ruelas Arnim 30-39 6
13 10:10:54 3863 Mutter Tom 40-49 2
14 10:11:49 3823 Vanzante Craig 40-49 3
15 10:16:12 3815 Johnson Steve 30-39 7
16 12:03:22 3821 Staker Robert 50-59 1
17 12:06:71 3824 Atkinson Kevin 30-39 8
18 12:14:46 3819 Houck Ken 50-59 2
19 12:37:17 3816 Johnson Eric 11-19 2
20 12:33:91 3822 Miner Shane 11-19 3
21 14:48:52 3818 Young Rick 40-49 4
22 14:51:18 3847 Rose Riley 11-19 4
23 15:25:54 3848 Rose Casey 11-19 5
24 DNF 3813 Archulleta Uel -jr 11-19 0

EVENT PHOTOS: if you have photos to share, send them to skatenow@att.net and we will post them here.

Stephanie -women's overall 1st

Alejandra - women's overall 2nd

Brittany - women's overall 3rd

Andrew - men's overall 1st

Paul standing-in for Mike Stein Men's 2nd

John - men's overall 3rd

Special Thanks to our event Sponsors: 
Access Mortgage - Marc Western and  'the SkateNow shop', LuiginoRacing USA, MATTER Wheels, K2, and RAPs.

** DRAPER, UTAH:  5K Inline Race **

4 races 4 money


Wadsworth Construction Utah National Guard Charitable Trust 5k Walk/Run/Skate

Event is canceled due to low registration.
Next Skate Race event is Sat September 15th - see below.


Ice, Ice Baby! Ice is off for summer.

Contact: Park City Speedskating Club event organizer David Harris for more event details: 


Park City Speedskating Club
P.O. Box 1480
600 Gillmor Way
Park City, UT 84060
(435) 658-4311


Get out for some Flat Track Action with Salt City's own Derby Girl's, and enjoy the skating, too.

Not for the Whimpy!! Definately a must see for all skaters! Support roller skating sports, and the official Salt Lake City, UT all female Flat Track Roller Derby League.  Drop onto the SCDG web page for current listings of upcoming bouts and events!  Check out the recent article in SLC Weekly:  It's ABOUT DERBY, with candid interview with Eric "El Brujo" [Coach] Kraan: Wheels of Furry.

SLC Derby Leauge Championships: Saturday, September 15th:  
Bomber Babes take on the Death Dealers, Utah Olympic Oval, Kearns, UT.  Doors open 6pm.
Tickets $10 Online/Advance, or $15 at the door (cash only)


Web Link:  http://www.saltcityderbygirls.com/


                         ** UPCOMING - SUMMER "FUN_ROLL & BBQ" **

                                           HA! Food is for wimps!  Get out and Skate!!


TIME:   12 noon - 4pm

Helmets are required to participate in any SKATENOW activity.  Protective gear recommended.

"Let the Good Food and Good Times Roll!

skaterz     SUMMER ROAD TRIP 2007:     JULY 2007
    click here to view the movie:   SKATENOW IDAHO....skating adventure

    and, to see pics:  Idaho trip pics

        74 miles of  Rail Trail Skating Pleasure in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
        Looking for a great skating adventure vacation? Look no further.
        Check out the info below, and plan your next skating vaction to Coeur d' Alene, ID with SkateNow!   
TRIP DETAILS: The trip involves a total of 74 miles of skating over 3 day, averaging 25 - 50 miles of skating per day, with  rest stops, photo oportunities, and water breaks along the way. Overnight stays include motels with ammenities. Participants on this skate tour should be in good physical condition, be experienced skaters, and have strong skating skills: including basic skating strides, turning, and stopping, and be comfortable with grades (slight downhills). Skaters must be able to skate a minimum of 25 miles per day.  Cyclist are welcome to join skaters. Helmets are required for all skaters participating in any SkateNow organized activities.  Other protective gear recommended.  This skate tour is an informal skating get together. Participants assume full financial and liable responsibility for their own costs for lodging, meals,  transportation, incidentals, etc.   

Skaters will stay in nearby hotels with access to trail head in Kellogg, ID.
Rooms are also available at any of the following nearby places.


Morning Star Lodge: 
These are condos located right along the pathway.
Link to online reservations & room images:  morning star

Baymont:  1-208-783-1234 / 800-785-5443
Near Gondola

River Walk Condos:    1-800-435-2588
1/2 mile from Gondola.

Silver Ridge Mt Lodge: 

Silverhorn Motor Inn & Restaurant: 208-783-1151 (pet friendly place)

Trail Motel: 208-784-1161
Located only 1/2 mile from Silver Mountain's Gondola Village

TRANSPORTATION:  Airfare or other transportation are to be arranged individually by participants.  Drive distrance from the  Salt Lake area is aprroximately 714 miles(approx 10 hours driving), all highway.  Those who carpool to share on gasoline, expenses, etc. are on their own to coordinate themselves.  For air travelers, fly into Spokane, WA - approximaltey a 1 hour drive east to Kellogg. You will need to secure transportation from the airport to Kellogg, ID.

July 4th -  July 8th. 

WEATHER:  Link:  WEATHER KELLOGG    Last season weather ranged from mid to high 70's, with mostly sunny skies.  We cannot guarentee a repeat of last years perfect weather.  In event of change of weather conditions, please be prepared.  Pack accordingly.  As an alternate activity, we will plan to do some hiking on Silver Mtn when skating is prohibited by weather. 

OTHER AREA STUFF TO DO:  Hiking, Cycling, Mtn biking, Fly Fishing, Kayaking, Camping, Hoseback Riding, Golfing....

General Information Links:

Disclaimer: This event is considered an informal skaters' get-together and is not sponsored or paid for by Skatenow, or any of its members/affiliates. SkateNow skaters, who generously volunteer to organize and coordinate this trip (lodging, transportation, route planning, etc.), assume no risk or general liability for any accidents, injury, losses, or death of the participants who choose to particiapte on this skate tour.  Skaters assume full repsonsibilty for themselves getting to and from the event location and while  participating in this event.

For more info contact: skatenow@att.net

Could 100 meters of smooth stuff happen any time soon?
We need you to make this venue happen!!  Please call, write, or email us with your support.  
Updates: slow, but forward progress on a proposed outdoor and indoor Velodrome facility here in the greater Salt Lake area. We are behind the effort 110%!  Having a 100 meter sanctioned flat track, along with the road track, would be crutial in bringing organized roller sports to Utah, for events such as100 meter Track Inline Racing and Roller Derby. If you interested in becoming a financial sponsor or volunteer contact us at Skatenow and let us know.  If you like the short stuff, this is for you. We're going the distance to put skating in SLC on the map!  

You've got 26 MILES to ROLL, BABY!  
We need you to make this event happen!!  Please call, write, or email us with your support.  
Okay, you've skated a few 5K's, but what's next you ask??  How about 26 miles of inline skating through streets of Salt Lake?  We're planning inline events and we need your help and feedback. If you are up for the miles contact us at Skatenow and let us know.  If you like the short stuff, please let us know that, too. We're going the distance to put skating in SLC on the map!  

**NEWS!! "LEARN to SKATE like the PRO's with the PRO's!"  


We will bring you the very BEST Speedskating has to offer, the legendary Barry Publow, author of "Speed on Skates".  Barry will conduct a special 2 - 1/2 Day Breakaway Skate Clinic.  This one-time inline clinic is custom designed for skaters of all levels of ability: from novice to speedskaters alike looking to improve their skating skills.  The clinic is open to both inline and ice skaters, and will provide skating technique concepts which will benefit skaters of both disciplines to fine-tune their skating skills, including  hours of personal instruction, technical sessions, and video analysis. If you are interested in participating in the clinic, please contact SkateNow to reserve your spot.  Specific Dates and Times for either summer 2007 will be announced once we have commitment of participants, however, the clinic will be limited in size. Let us know as soon as possible if you are interested in enrolling.  Financial commitment of $75.00 (non-refundable) is required to hold a spot in this clinic.

The clinic will be held over a single weekend: including a Friday evening, and from 9-4pm on both Saturday and Sunday. Cost will be approximately $180 per particpant, includes electronic clinic workbook, t-shirt, nice discounts on Bont products, and discounted copies of Barry's book 'Speed on Skates'.   

** We need a minimum of 15 skaters to conduct the clinic.  If you are interested, please contact SkateNow.

Commentary on 'Skating Etiquette'.
As skaters we travel at far greater speeds than peds or runners.  When sharing pathways please be a good skating ambassador for our sport:  Always pass on the left. Give adequate notice to those you are coming up upon to pass: a friendly "Passing on your left"  - it's all it takes.  Be courteous and say "thanks"  after passing.   When facing head-on peds, joggers, or cyclist traffic, establish eye contact, and call out "heads up".  Usually most folks will yield, and migrate back to the side of the pathway. 

Being kind soles helps us let others know that skaters are not mean people.  Case in point:  I recently went out for a skate at our local park pathway. No sooner had I "slowly" gotten onto the pathway, when a gentleman addresses me and ask if I know this group of fast skaters that were there.  I  pause, regretingly, acknowledging them.  He then proceeds to unloaded his complaints on me about how they are going too fast, that they are rude, and that they do not warn people when they are passing.  I defused him to some degree by assuring him that I would chat with the group he was referring to. Question to self: Why exactly am I standing here listinening to this agrevated guy in the first place when I could be skating? It all left a bad taste in my mouth.  My energy levels sank, and I really felt like throwing my skates in the trunk of hte car and heading home.  Why am I personally burdened with this stuff? I solely am not responsible for the actions of others, yet there I was taking heat for the actions of other skaters,  and once again defending my sport to some grumpy and crotchity old fella.   Is it too much to ask to just be able to go out and enjoy a skate?  As skaters we have very legal right to utilize public parkway paths. However, when the city, or worse police, receive a number of complaints about us, we jepordize our use of those facilities. They will form negative opinions about skaters, and make presumtions that indeed skaters cause problems, where in fact that may not be the case at all.  Eventually they will seek ways to eliminate our use of or control our speeds on pathways. Skaters are less apt to voice their concerns /complaints about how: peds walk 4 abreast and ignore on-comers; how i-podded joggers seek that center spot on the pathway, even though there is a dedicated jogging path adjacent for them to use, ignoring or oblivious to skaters passing (from either direction); how cyclist never follow any sot of "keep left" rule;  how dogs are always on 12" retractable(death) leashes - which is illegal in city parks.  Yet, peds and joggers will be the first to air complaints about skaters. The voices the cities hear is the voice they respond to. Not only do we lose face, collectively we receive a bad reputation.  If the parks are going to receive complaints about skaters, then skaters should equally voice their legitimate complaints about runners, joggers, cyclist, and dogs.... otherwise, things look pretty one-sided and we will be sure to loose out on any arguments. 

Let's not give the impression that skaters are mean, inconsiderate, rude, and dangerous people.   Let's do the simple things it takes to be good skating ambassadors.   Rather than go at all out speeds in crowded parks, where these types of encounters happen on average every few hundred yards, let's request the cities to provide skaters places where we can practice our sport to its potential.  The cities sink hordes of public money into other sports faciliteis, including skate board parks, etc.,  so why not allocate funds for a nicely developed user-friendly trail systems?  All we need to do is ask.  Read more about establishing a  Skaters Advisory Committee. (SkateNow Home Page)  If we want things done for our sport, we need to get organized.  I know I feed burdened because ultimately I care about our sport.  Complaining get you nowhere.  Commitment gets you everywhere. 

"Where the Buffalo Roll" or "the politics of buffalo pie!"
Rolling on antelope Island, April 28, 2007
[report and comentary] "You can't roller skate in a buffalo herd. You can't rollerskate in a buffalo herd"......  well,  actually, yes you can!  Skaters got out for an early spring time roll on Antelope Island, located in the middle of the great Salt Lake.  Perfect 80+ degree weather and blue skies overhead, with a light breeze.  We started the skate from the south end at Garf Ranch and headed north towards the causeway. (11 miles) The road surface has taken it's toll over the past few seasons: snow, salt air,  acid rain...  With an accumulation of loose gravel on the shoulder my suspicions were raised - perhaps even this stretch of beautiful road had fallen victim to the dreaded chip-seal.  What was once a pristine heavenly  stretch of smooth asphalt now offers built-in foot massage as you roll along.  Not unbearable by any means, but a reminder of how the causeway road surface was on past trips to Antleope, which is exactly why we were not skating the 7 miles of causeway road.  Heading north, within a few short miles we encountered a number of buffalo casually catching shade from a few trees near the road side. Further up antelope dotted the scenery along the seemingly endless lake shore edge, with snowy mountain caps of the Wasatch front reflecting in the great Salt Lake creating a nature lovers paradise.  Nothing out of the norm for the area,  buffalo have free range here, so it is best to scout out their whereabouts 'before' skatting or cycling. 

A few miles south of the causeway, the ambitious skated up "the big hill": a long, grueling  wind-sucking climb.  As for the rest of us, we 'U'- turned at the hills base and headed back south. Just before turning around, we sighted a jack rabbit bounding across the road in front of us, followed almost instanteneously by the sighting of a jack-ass: a driver who attempted to use his vehicle to push us off the road.  What was a moment ago a nice skate and bike with friends turned from sweet to sour.  I had less than 12" of clearance between the drivers tire and my wheels as he deliberately cut in along side us.  The jack rabbit dissapeared into the landscape.  The jack-ass, however, decided to stop, parking his over-sized gass-sucking monster rig truck straddling across both lanes of traffic on a double yellow while his wife remained inside the vehicle. The driver hopped out to snarl at us about why we [skaters and cyclist] are not to be skating or cycling in the road.  Wearing non-descript atire and carrying a large radio, he pumped out his chest in that manly way that only guys driving big rigs can do and boasted in an authorative voice about how we are restricted to using only the 12"-18" of gravel road edge outside the white line, and that he was ready to radio in patrol....  Until, I sited him Utah's state motor vehicle codes pertaining to cyclists rights and useage of roadways (something he was obviouly not knowledgable enough about to respond to).  His authorative voice diminished, his chest deflated, and I took my cue to continue reciting state law to him. Turns out "Jack" (as I did not get his real name) is a park "volunteer retiree" with nothing better to do than support GWB (by driving up and down the island road all day long]  occasionally stopping to wave his radio and imaginary badge at folks.  Perhaps his radio would get better recepetion from a rabbit hole.  I ask of myself, is it me?  I just seem to attract these types like deer flies to buffalo pies.  There I was out for a nice skate with friends.....then WHAM!  I' m stuck along the roadside defending my sport to a confrontatinoal jack ass who damn near killed me moments ago.  Granted,  I defused him quite quickly, like snaring a seemingly fast rabbit, and admittedly there is gratification in knowing your prey is captured by the confines of legality. Pleasantry comes in many forms, like wathcing this guy with open, yet now paralized jaws brings some humor to it all.  But, in reality I wished it'd never happened. Rather it spoiled my afternoon.  Armed with the law, I proceeded to inform him of the Utah State Motor Vehicle code which clearly states cyclist rights for use of roadways when there is no designated bike lane, and that unless Utah state parks are expempt from the state motor vehicle code I failed to see his point.  Of course he continued to serve up defunct agruemnts such as bikes and skaters phohibt cars from passing and therefore they shoud not be in the road.  Pesonal opinion is not law.  Again,  in response, I sited Utah Motor Vehicle code:  A cyclist has a legal 3' (three foot) right of way into the driving lane. (period).  A driver of a vehicle over-taking a cyclist or skater on the roadway has 3 options: 1. follow at a safe distance behind the bike until a passing lane appears, 2. pass illegally, or 3. run over the cyclist and continue along.  All the while, mind you, Jack's truck is straddling  2 lanes of traffic, blocking cars in both lanes, while his little misses sits (endangered) idley waiting his return.  Meanwhile, a car comes around the blind corner and has to go off road to pass by his truck.   I was flat out baffeld by 'who exactly' Jack thinks is causing problems here.  He persited to continue on, enlightening me now of how motorist/visitors on the island are gazing around not paying attention as they drive (gosh, that was an eye opening news flash).  I agreed, pointing out I am well aware [of idiot drivers], as road skaters and cyclist, unfortunately, we contend with bad drivers no matter where we are. But, thanking him for pointing it out anyway. With that said Jack retreated back to his over-sized rig and drove off. 

Skaters, we dont need to be harrased by Jacks who do not know !@*(!$ about their rights or ours under state laws, and just go off on us, or malicioulsy out of their way to deliberatly and intentfully force you off the road.  No thanks!  We clearly need better defined laws that protect our rights to our chosen sport. We need the laws to be updated, and changed so we can freely skate everywhere cyclsit are allowed.  This requires an understanding and knowledge of current cycling / motor vehicle laws and interpretations of those laws, and in some cases as in other cities around the country, standing up for your rights as a skater by drafting up and presenting legislative bills to your state to protect your sport!   Bearing in mind, not all state or city motor vehicle codes have the same provisions for skaters as cyclist.  Other states already have legislatoin already in place for skaters.  Our state code in Utah is somewhat arbitrary in that specific area, which works in our favor as skaters, but we need to have this clarifed and our rights to skate protected.

Stay tuned!


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last updated: 09/10/2007