Students raise $920 for park

GARDNERVILLE - Student leaders at Pau-Wa-Lu Middle School asked for skate park donations, and their classmates answered with $920.

Principal Charlie Condron said the money, given to Douglas County leaders Thursday night, was raised over two weeks through an informal campaign. The student leadership class coordinated the effort.

"We were shocked we got that much," said Condron. "The students really stepped up."

The money was raised in the memory of Ryan O'Sullivan, 16, a skateboarding enthusiast who died unexpectedly after an asthma attack in September. Ryan's family helped found the Carson Valley Skaters, which has been working to raise support for a skate park in Douglas County.

Ryan was a sophomore at Douglas High and had attended Pau-Wa-Lu for three years.

"He was always giving us ideas and suggestions on how to be more inclusive of the skateboarders, so his passing really had an impact on our school," said Rommy Cronin, a teacher and advisor to the leadership class.

She said the students are pleased with the county's decision to build a skatepark in Lampe Park.

"Everybody's excited. There are several who would have liked to see it in the Ranchos, but the attitude is also 'at least we've got one coming,'" said Cronin.

Ryan may be the namesake of the new skate park. He will also be remembered at Pau-Wa-Lu with a plaque and a tree.

The skate park, which will be built at Lampe Park, is expected to cost $70,000 to $140,000. Other groups and events have also raised money to help pay for the park.


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