Skateboarding police officer hopes to lift ban on Fox River Trail

GREEN BAY – It’s not every day you see a police officer riding around on a longboard.

“Green Bay’s become very community oriented. We want to engage with the community as much as we can and we’re trying to find creative ways that we can do that,” said Green Bay Police Officer Joel Zwicky.

The city of Green Bay’s one and only skateboard police officer is on a mission. He wants to lift a ban against skateboards and longboards on the Fox River Trail.

“They can’t do it anywhere in the downtown of Green Bay because of city ordinance. They can’t do it on any street in Wisconsin because of state law,” Zwicky said.

So he thought why not the Fox River Trail?

“The trail is the perfect spot for them to be where they’re going to be safe and out of traffic.”

Zach Potts likes the idea.

“That would be awesome because that’s way faster than going all the way around the whole city to get to where you need to go,” said Potts.

But the county has a ban on all skateboard and longboard uses on the trail.

“It was not an allowable use when the trail was developed. That’s the way that it was voted on and at that time skateboards and longboards weren’t really a hot button topic or recreational use,” said Matthew Kriese, assistant park director for Brown County.

Some want to see that ban stay.

“The trail’s already kind of busy and with people who are walking like myself and people who run and also the bikers, I’m not sure that there’s room,” said John De Cleene.

Another concern with a skateboard is whether or not it would cause damage on the trail. Officer Zwicky says the wheels are no different than the ones you find on inline skates which are already allowed on the trail.

Zwicky sent his proposal to the county board. The board will review the proposal and possibly vote within the next few months.

“My hope is that we can have this trail open to skateboarders this spring,” Zwicky said.

If you’re caught skateboarding or longboarding on the trial you could get a citation. The fine is $173.40.

Click here to visit Officer Zwicky’s website.

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