NEW HAVEN — They might not be roller derby ready (yet), but dozens of young skaters have been turning out this winter for weekly fun and exercise at the New Haven Community Center.
Sponsored by the town, and led by volunteer Bernita Allen, the center is open each year during the colder months for skating. Held on Fridays from 6 to 9 p.m., the last few weeks have seen as many as 80 kids taking to the floor.
And thanks to a grant, a company donation, and proceeds from a haunted house fundraiser, the majority of those children are wearing new skates.
Town recorder Roberta Hysell completed an application that resulted in a $2,005 grant from the Robert and Louise Claflin Foundation. Jamie Roush of RK Innovations, LLC, oil field services, New Haven, donated $250 to the center, and approximately $600 was raised at a Halloween haunted house. The money was pooled to order 60 new pairs of roller and in-line skates.
Children can rent the skates for a dollar, or bring their own, although no “heely” shoes are permitted on the floor. Admission is $2, and concessions of pizza, pretzels, candy, drinks and other goodies are offered for sale.
While most of the youngsters are happy just to be skating in circles, things really get exciting when the special events begin. There are races, as well as the ever-popular limbo contests.
Hysell, Jessica Greene, Becky Knight and Lisa Flowers are regular volunteers at the center, along with Allen. The group will hold skating through March 10. There will not be skating in the case of inclement weather, however.
The non-smoking community center is also available for party rental at $50 for two hours. For more information, contact Allen at 304-882-3887.
Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing who can be reached at [email protected]