By Greg Ritchie
CROCKETT – If all the stars align, the remodeling work gets done, the permits go through and Crockett city council votes to approve the project – Crockett will be getting a roller rink, hopefully by the first of October.
The idea was the brainchild of Nita Stout, who grew up in Crockett, moved away for a while but returned to take care of her mother, who was tired of being away from home in Houston County.
Stout bought the old Crockett State Bank Building on the square at the corner of E. Houston Ave. where her daughter plans to open a business. But what to do with the other free space in the building?
“We thought, ‘A skating rink, that is what Crockett needs!’ Stout said. “We said, ‘Let’s do something for the kids. Our original thought was just for little kids and birthday parties but the interest has grown and now we are thinking about an adult night.”
“Crockett Skate and Arcade” is the name chosen, as the venue will feature an arcade and eventually a full snack bar.
Stout says the venue can hold about 45 skaters, will be available for private and birthday parties and will have its own entrance across from the Moosehead Cafe, with parking on two sides of the building.
Don’t bust out those skates, just yet. There are still some hurdles to cross, Stout acknowledged. Certified letters must go out to neighbors, the repairs and modifications must all be completed and inspected and city council must approve this use of the property before the doors can open. Stout hopes to have this done in the next couple of weeks, with a vote from city council at their last meeting in September before the Oct. 1 opening date.
Stout remembered well growing up in Crockett, with youngsters making their own entertainment and driving up and down the ‘drag’ Friday and Saturday nights. She hopes the rink will keep kids doing something fun and safe and keep them off those smart phones, at least for a while.
“I want to give the kids a safe place to come and socialize and burn off that energy,” Stout concluded. And have something fun to do.”
Greg Ritchie can be reached at [email protected]