The Scalzi Originals Skateboarders began as a community campaign to both beautify the skatepark from its neglected condition and to prepare it as a family-friendly place for typical youth and adults and for individuals with special needs to enjoy.
Skateboarding integrates about 30 different executive function skills and is a formidable core, and lower body physical toner, making it an excellent activity for those on the autism spectrum, with Downs Syndrome, varied physical needs and Intellectual Disability.
At the onset, the skatepark was strewn with trash, broken glass, grocery carts, gang insignia graffiti and obscene graffiti. A social media campaign that included you tube videos, twitter postings with images, and instagram stories, along with the painting over of the graffiti was initiated.
The Stamford Parks and Recreation offices were approached in the spirit of collaboration and 10 local skateboarders were made coaches. From summer 2015 to April 30, 2016 the campaign to change the culture began the first phase, whereas from 2016 to summer 2017 the skateboard school serviced about 100 beginner skateboarders.
Moreover, parents and grandparents began to be a presence in the park and their children had a friendly place to practice the sport.
Since then, the foundation has held integrative skateboarding instruction in Westport, Norwalk, Rye, Manhattan and Brooklyn. Typical youth and adults as well as though with special needs, such as Downs Syndrome, on the autism spectrum, or varied special needs are taught.
Presently, Special Educator Coach Bill has partnered with the City of Rye Parks & Recreation since November 2017. Its Rye Originals Skateboard School is completing its 5th season at Rye Skatepark averaging instruction to 40-45 students/ week, Spring, Summer, & Autumn.
Individual classes of 1-2 students are regularly instructed at Pier 62 on Manhattan's West Side HWY.