News From Terre Haute, Indiana

June 17, 2013

On Friday, hit the park and raise funds for skateboarders

Dustyn Fatheree
The Tribune-Star

INDIANAPOLIS — The On-board United Initiative — O.U.I. for short — has scheduled an all-ages fundraising event Friday in honor of national Go Skateboarding Day.

All proceeds are destined for the Terre Haute Parks Department.

The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. at Voorhees Park at a shelter next to the skate park.

The park borders Indiana 63 at Voorhees Street on Terre Haute’s south side.

“This is the first fundraiser we will hold,” said Gail Phillips, an O.U.I. representative. “Donations will go to directly improving Voorhees Park.”  

Raffles will be held hourly, starting at noon, for skateboard and BMX bike merchandise donated by local skateboarding and bike shops, she added. T-shirts will also be sold for $15 a shirt, and live entertainment will be present.

Some of the vendors donating or attending the event are expected to be Fickle Skateboards, Nomad Skate Truck, Dazed Skateboards, What Luck Skateboards and Rhett Skateboarding.

O.U.I. was formed with the purpose of increasing and advancing the value of Voorhees Park — more specifically, the skate park and people who use it. Since the O.U.I. formed around a month ago, some upgrades have been made to the park through various donations and from the parks deptartment’s donated labor, she added.

“Since we (O.U.I.) were established, two miniature shelters, a water fountain, better drainage and concrete has been laid down to minimize the amount of mud that gets on the skatepark,” she said. “When I first ran across this skatepark, the people using it didn’t even have access to water.”

One person who could have used a water fountain while skating is 13-year-old Bryson Bones.

“I dehydrated once and had to stay in a hospital overnight hooked up to an IV,” he said.

Bones claims he spends 10 hours a day at the skatepark and hopes to eventually get two more skating bowls added to the existing one, because that was in the original blueprint.

O.U.I. looks to get enough local support and finances to do just that. The plan was to have two more bowls added to the existing one, but lack of funding has prevented that from happening, Phillips said. If that is out of the question, they would settle for a half-pipe, she said.

Another add-on O.U.I. would like to see developed is a shed for the people to store skate and bike equipment, as well as brooms and squeegees to remove dirt or any other dangerous material from the skating area.

Phillips is confident that people will attend the event and said that it is being held out of good faith to the community and the parks department to help make renovations possible.

“Voorhees Park is a very beautiful and accessible park,” she said. “It has a great location along the highway and serves as a nice focal point to the surrounding skateboarding and biking community.”

 For more information, call 325-315-0683, email


Reporter Dustyn Fatheree can be reached at 812-231-4255 and dustyn.fatheree