"...last month, the city Parking, Traffic and Circulation Committee reviewed the request for a skating ban by 30 residents in the Bluebird Canyon area, a favorite downhill run of skaters which reaches a 13.5% grade in places. Residents suggested skaters be forbidden from streets that exceed a 3 percent grade or those who exceed 10 m.p.h. For comparison, the grade of the Third Street hill downtown is roughly 29%."
-Laguna Beach Independent
As a lifelong resident if Laguna Beach, I have experienced our town in every form, from mountain biking in the greenbelts to snorkeling off Pearl St. Yet truly nothing compares to the perspective that some who skates enjoys every day. With the endless beautiful weather and a strong extreme sports presence in our community, a skate down one of the millions of bland, track-home lined streets that blanket most of Southern California will never compare to the rewarding sensation that is skateboarding in Laguna. Every generation ends up telling the next of how much more relaxed the legislative restrictions on everyday leisure once were...why is it that city councils feel the need to restrict recreation in a town who's culture is largely based around just that? To limit skateboarding to streets with a 3% percent grade or less would effectively ban skateboarding throughout the vast majority of the city, and literally make it illegal to skate from one end of the town to the other, whether for recreation or transportation. Originally known as "sidewalk surfing", skateboarding's history is directly rooted in surfing, the original goal being to mimic the fluid experience of riding of wave by cruising down hills. To take away the ability to ride down any real hill would prevent skaters from experiencing the sport in its initial and purest form. As the sport progressed, its riders soon came under fire and were stereotyped as renegade punks with no understanding of respect or responsibility. This label is one that continues to plague members of the unique culture that is skateboarding, and one that many of us have tried desperately to change. We are equally a part of this community and have had the privilege of sharing this paradise and the many gifts it has to offer with all of you out there who view us in a negative light. In closure, I ask every person of voting age in Laguna Beach kindly that for once, instead of letting yet another right to have fun be stolen from both the kids and adults of this town, give this restrictive petition a serious thought and just ask yourself, "will banning skateboarding in Laguna Beach truly improve my quality of life?"
- The Mushroom Clan