Page 3866 - Week 12 - Thursday, 24 October 2013

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As I have said previously in this chamber, the strong involvement of the skating community in the ACT in the design and development of our parks has really paid off. Along with the excellent work of Canberra Skateboarding’s Australia hub, SbA hub, high-quality infrastructure has played a strong role in the popularity of skating as a sport here in the ACT. It was a real pleasure to see so many kids at the Belcopalooza getting a chance to watch the country’s best skaters on the same half-pipes, bowls and rails where Canberrans get to skate throughout the year.

Here in the ACT skating is a truly accessible sport. For kids watching the “burly” aerial moves and totally “hesh” street skating, the message was clear: the only thing standing between them and the same high level of skill is time on the board and maybe a few scraped knees.

Whilst I was blown away by all of the participants on the day, I would like to congratulate Tommy Flynn, the skater who took out the top honours. Even with a knee injury, he pulled off a totally clean “nollie crooked grind”, a highly technical move that secured his victory. I would also like to recognise and congratulate Canberra skater Matt Cheney, who skated like a total pro on the day to come fifth overall. During his skate, “CheenDog” ploughed through the biggest 360-flip off the cheese wedge down the five and showed us some secret gap lines.

To borrow some lingo from a much older Canberran, the hammer moves of our great skaters are virtuosic and breathtaking in the extreme, and it was an amazing opportunity for all Canberrans to be able to attend such an elite sporting event free of charge in our own backyard.

The Belcopalooza was also a great chance for Canberra to show off a different and, dare I say, cooler face of our city than people usually get to see. I was totally stoked to attend this event in our centenary year. But with our excellent infrastructure and supportive and active SBA community, I am sure I will have plenty more opportunities to find out what a “hard-flip latey 180” looks likes in real life.


MS LAWDER (Brindabella) (5.00): I would like to speak about Bravehearts, a not-for-profit organisation, whose purpose is to educate, empower and protect Australian children from sexual assault, with an overall mission to stop child sexual assault in our society. Bravehearts was founded during Child Protection Week in 1997 and has focused on moving a once-taboo subject out of the shadows. Partly as a consequence of this organisation but together with a number of organisations, the commonwealth government and its COAG partners created the national framework for the protection of Australia’s children, a major achievement.

The reason I raise this important organisation today is that currently Centori 777 is happening. This is a challenge which raises funds for Bravehearts. The challenge requires participants to raise money and run seven full marathons, in seven days, in seven states. That is 294 kilometres over seven days in seven different locations

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