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Hernando skate park opening comes after years of dedication

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HERNANDO, Miss. -- "We spent a lot of time and effort getting this done," Edward Pidgeon with Hernando Skates said.

Right off of Highway 51 sits a dream come true in Hernando.

"This place is the greatest," Pidgeon said.

A skate park with a purpose was built to give young people who are not into conventional sports an outlet.

"As a result they're no longer the outcast, or the loner, or whatever people call them these days," Pidgeon explained.

Pidgeon and Chad Crawford were the main reason the skate park even exists.

The duo dug into their own pockets.

"Scrimping and saving every bit of money we could," Crawford said.

The group also asked people who live in Hernando for donations.

"You know? Shaking the cup. Please give me money," Crawford described.

Crawford and Pidgeon raised $40,000 in four years.

"With their help, we were able to apply for the grant," Dolly Brechin, with Hernando Parks and Recreation, said.

The city was awarded $100,000 from the state that made building the park possible.

"It's almost like my baby in a way," Brechin, who wrote the grant, said. "I get to see it come to life."

Creators said the park is special and want it to serve as an inspiration to others in their community.

"We're just ordinary citizens," Crawford said. "We're just a couple of guys who saw a need in the community, and we felt strongly enough about it to do something."

"We don't have a lot of money in Hernando. So, when people come to us and say 'hey if you'll just set aside a small piece of land, we'll go raise the money' -- they kind of rise to the top," Hernando Mayor Chip Johnson told WREG.

The park has been opened to the public since September 18, but the city is having a grand opening on Saturday at noon.

More than 300 people have already used the facility.

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