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      New skate plaza in need of funds

      Peter Britz has been skateboarding for about 14 years.

      The skate plaza in Marquette is like a second home for him.

      "There's no rules, there's no regulations. You just go out and you can push around flat or go to the skate park and try to put some tricks down. Either way it's fun. There's no one saying 'you have to do this, you have to do that,' and I guess that's my biggest appeal to skateboarding. It's just free, it's enjoyable, it's fun, there's an adrenaline to it," said Britz.

      But lately, the plaza has been showing some signs of wear and tear, and is in need of a little TLC.

      The park was built just over a year ago.

      But because of our harsh U.P. winters, a few areas have some erosion and need to be repaired or replaced.

      They're also hoping to put a piece of skateable art in the middle of the plaza.

      Two pieces of the plaza were built on hills.

      The earth around the hills are now eroding.

      Nheena Wyer Ittner from the Skate Plaza Committee says now the hills need to be built up to be sturdy, yet still pleasing to the eye.

      "Then we want to be able to commission some really outstanding benches. Now, the benches will be for the kids who skateboard out here, but also for the parents who want to sit and watch. And I want them to be, not just regular benches, I'd like to see them be special," said Wyer-Ittner.

      The committee needs about $20,000 to accomplish the benches, repairs, purchase signs to recognize donors, and to create the skateable art piece.

      So they turned to the crowd-funding site Patronicity.

      Patronicity has a partnership with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

      They have 30 days to raise $10,000.

      If they are able to raise the money, the MEDC will match the money, resulting in $20,000 for the projects.

      "Our entire community is really bettered by having a facility such as this in the community for the kids to use. And these kids are not in organized sports. These kids are usually just out here in the elements doing something. Honing in on a skill. They're doing a healthy activity and that's what we want to promote," said Wyer-Ittner.

      "I think there's definitely a stigma involved with skateboarding. and I think that definitely needs to be lifted. I think that people in the community should reach out and check out skateboarding and look at the skateboarders. They're really cool people," said Britz.

      To donate to the cause, click here.

      ***If the link does not work immediately, check back later. Patronicity officials say they're working on the skate park project park of the site.***