No interference from America

Skate a bowl in Nicaragua

To make up for our overall snotty temperament, we sometimes are sentenced like to do a little bit of public service. In that spirit we bring you this story about Nathan Curry, an American working in Nicaragua who is building a skatepark there in his spare time. I first found out about Nathan’s project in the Bowling Green Daily News. After tracking him down, he agreed to answer a few questions and send in some progress reports. Be the first person to correctly identify the reference in the title of this post and win…

…absolutely nothing, but an honorary Punk Rock warm fuzzy. That’s right, we’ve got field offices in Columbia and Nicaragua. I need to clarify that the pic in the top right is not directly related to the skatepark site, It’s just a picture that Nathan took in Nicaragua.The rest of the photos in this post, except where noted, are also by Nathan Curry.

Nica Sk8 Project

It warms our hearts to hear abut and see a basketball court being torn up to provide some tranny for skateboarding.

Q: What are you up to?

Basically, I came to Nica as an engineering volunteer working on solar energy. But, I sk8 and immediately sought out spots to sk8 and people to sk8 with. I found out that there is only one spot in all of Nica that is solely for sk8ers and it’s a modified basketball court with only a few small obstacles (a manual pad and 3-sided pyramid that are concrete, a handrail coming down from a higher sidewalk, and some metal grind rails). There is absolutely no transition in Nica. I am a concrete bowl fanatic so I felt so bad that these guys don’t even have a quarter-pipe or jump ramp. A friend of mine from Indiana works for CA Skateparks sometimes and is really knowledgeable about concrete bowl making, AND it turns out his step dad is Nicaraguan. So, he – Solomon – has spent a lot of time down here and as a vested interest in helping out. We spent a few weeks emailing and discussing before he came down. He arrived Wed (2 days ago) and we started working the very next morning. We collected donations from some friends back home and have started. We have enough now for this bank/euro and the quarter-pipe but we hope to come up with enough money for a couple extra tidbits to make the area flow a little better. That’s the nutshell.

Skate tranny in Nicaragua

Q: Do you have a web site or paypal donation link?

I wish we had a PayPal. I have a personal one but nothing “official.” I have created a non-profit group for promoting skateboarding related projects but we are still in the process of filing the paperwork. So, I can’t offer tax credit or anything yet. I will, however, keep very detailed records and make them available on the web when we can.

Skate tranny in Nicaragua

Donations for the Nicaragua skate park may be sent to Curry’s mother, Rebecca Saalwaechter, at 1819 Smallhouse Road, Bowling Green, KY, 42104. If more than $400 is raised, Curry said he would use the extra money for additional improvements to the project.

Sk8 Nica progress quick vids

These are short clips that look like they are unedited uploads from a still camera with video capability.

Follow the progress on your own

Nathan Curry on YouTube.
Nathan Curry on PhotoBucket.

More Nicaraguan skate action

Skatenica.com is a fledgling web site that appears to be off to a good start. It looks there are already a couple of noteworthy spots in Nicaragua. Photo credits, left Nelson Gutiérrez, right Junio Zamora by Dax Castellon

skatenica.com

I think this counts as a feature.

12 Comments

  1. “No interference from America” Nice! … but are you sure? The US could be supporting “contras” or Counter-revolutionaries as we speak. In the 80’s the Nicos tried to get something done in THEIR country the US supported terrorists to disrupt them. Who knows, maybe the US is sending BMX contras to ruin what the skaters are trying to develop.

  2. Wusup, guys?
    I’m Dax, webmaster of skatenica.com
    As Nathan mentioned before in this article, we have no skatepark at all and we really appreciate Nathan’s and Solomon’s help.
    In Nicaragua there are some fine street spots, but some of them are a little dangerous (like any other country, forget all the media hype about Nicaragua, war and terrorism) and we need a peacefull place to skate and hang out.
    Yeah, we have BMX riders (a lot) and rollerbladers too 😛
    Again, thanks, guys for your support!

  3. hey im a skater from nicaragua and was excited when i heard of this quarter pimp they are building. thanks for nathan^s suppor and to everybody who is interested in helping nicaraguan skater. thanks

  4. Saaan-din-ista!

  5. a quarter pimp? Wow, that’s cheap.

  6. All Politics and BMX jokes aside… Thats great news!! Its good to see some motivated skaters getting it done. Ive been to Nicaragua, and despite being one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere the people have remained proud and respectful.
    Are you guys accepting old decks and parts as well?

  7. francisco M on May 22, 2007 - Reply

    yea its cheap, however, here in nica the economic situation is not good at all,, our goberment is triing to do all they can so we can live in peace,,this new project shows the care and dedication that other people has , and we , all the nicas, apreciate that,

  8. Argelio Baca on May 23, 2007 - Reply

    The first time that we saw nathan, we everybody though that he was a quite boy, but it was because, he tough that no one of the skaters in nicaragua, speak english but then someone started talking to him and that was the started of this project, and its true that we are one of the poorest country, but we are proud of skatenica, and we wont forget what nathan and solomon are doing for us, thanks, really thanks.

  9. julian on May 24, 2007 - Reply

    hey im new skater from nicaragua, since i know what is real skate and what is a real life? i can eving imagine my life out of that, skateboarding is not only ride on street or skatepark, is something more than words, U feel like thousend of feelings when the comunication whit people U care and make skateboarding go so far away, and if that was a litlebeat, comes to U, help other people, so U dont care how they are, how they look like their close, cose U dont now they!, the anything U now!, is they need U! and the wall is broken eving the lenguage, like my inglish(so bad),, so thanks natan,solomon and dont forgive the help was bring it and bring the group of skaters(all sk8ers stay and help in the laps of this contruction)who realy cares the skateboarding in Mont berkly and more important of that in nicaragua….every rock count in this prosess of real life…….

  10. Nathan Curry on May 26, 2007 - Reply

    hey all! thanks for the positive support and comments. We just finished the project last night and took today to chill. there is a competition tomorrow. I will be posting some pic updates later tonight. For now, I will say that it came out quite nice – butter smooth tranny – and we look forward to shreaidng it to pieces. 🙂 But, we are definitely in need of more donations. I am in the process of setting up a Pay Pal account for this. And yes…. we could handle used and/or new equipment to help these guys out. Another problem is that there is no real skateshop here – just a surf shop that has a few decks and WAY over charges for them.

    more soon.
    Nate

    P.S. mad props to Sol for his help and tools. visit him at myspace.com/solbriggs

  11. I know this sounds naive, but I had no idea there was anything like this in Nicaragua. My whole family is from Nicaragua… dad was born there, mom was born though her family was born there. Me? I was born and raised in NYC and lack sorely any knowledge about whats going on in Nicaragua, and my family doesn’t really seem to care to educate me (or possibly they don’t think i’d like to know?) Anyway, what I know is from what I read… And this was great to see. Something I could relate to… something I wish I could help with? Anyway… I dunno I suppose just… Right on. Anyone who’d like to educate me lol… um… hit me up! (myspace.com/antisane)

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