As we left on our roadtrip to go to some old but not forgotten riding spots we were looking forward to a fun filled trip.
The first skate park we headed for was Appleton's Area 51. As we drove past the front of the Skate Park we noticed it was
quiet and dark. We walked up to the front entrance and a sign posted on the door said, "Area 51 is temporary closed and being
moved to a new location". We had heard rumors about them relocating but have thought they would keep the original one open
until the new one was done. As we looked though the front windows warm, fuzzy memories came back of Standard's Jeremy Vierhouse
breaking a beer bottle over his head, FBM's Cronwell rolling down the hip end over end at an BACO Jam and other fond memories.
It seems strange not hearing AC/DC ripping out of the speakers and the announcer talking on the PA sounding like he had a
mouth full of crap. With no park to ride we went back to the motel.
The next day we traveled to Oshkosh to check out the old Cement Park in the downtown district. We unloaded the bikes and
Bryan rode up to the entrance only to be greeted by a skater telling him "it is skaters only allowed here". We looked at the
entrance sign and on the bottom it said, " No Bicycles". Oh hell, lets ride anyhow. Of the 10 or so skaters using the park
one was friendly. Another told us it was a $1,000.00 fine if you were caught riding a bike in the park. We figured a
public official of this City must want to buy a BMW for his girlfriend and use the outrageous fines to pay for it. He
must have the one for his wife paid for by now with fines like that! Between the cold atmosphere from the skaters and thinking
one of them called the local police we booked it out of there. They need to lighten up.
We then headed for Neenah to go to the Skate Park next to the police station. The first thing we noticed since the last
time we were there they replaced the wooden ramps with metal ramps. They now have a spine and small fun box. The locals there
were some crazy dudes especially the one hanging himself on a tree with a dog choker collar. He would hang himself and then
drop down. The guy needs therapy before he kills himself. The locals also told us about Area 51's plans to build an awesome
park. After about 2 hours of riding and watching the crazy guy torture himself we went to get something to eat and headed
back to the motel.
The next day we headed for the mad city, (Madison, WI) to the Four Seasons indoor park. We were really surprised when we
walked into the park to find it practically a ghost town. There were only about 5 skaters using it. They took the spine out
of the south side of the park and replaced it with a long grinding table with different levels. They took the spine to the
Milwaukee 4 Seasons. The dude behind the counter taking care of the clothing and hardware sales was awesome to talk to. We
talked for almost a half hour with him.
After we were done at 4 Seasons we started on the 3 hour trip back home. After a sketchy start on the trip it finished
off great. 3 Skate Parks in 2 days is not bad without $1,000.00 fines, speeding tickets or breakdowns. I cant wait to do it
Photo credit: The photo up above is from BACO. It is one of FBM's riders.