People come from everywhere to Nowear, a park for BMX and more in rural Nebraska
UNADILLA, Neb. (KLKN) – The Nowear Compound may be in the middle of two cornfields in Nebraska, but the extreme park means the world to so many.
“This place is remarkable,” said groundskeeper Mason White, a BMX professional. “This is all I have; this is my home.”
This extreme park has brought people together from all around the world. The track has had people from Greece, Canada and London, just to name a few.
Owner Karl Hinkley said one mother and son “liked this place so much, they drove all the way from Arizona just to visit us.”
The nonprofit Nowear just opened Nebraska’s first pump track, which Hinkley says is the fastest growing thing in bicycling across the world. A pump track is meant to be ridden entirely by moving your body, not pedaling.
This place is so much more than just a place to roll; it’s a chance for many to get back on the right track.
“We had some ramps outside and everything, but I was working with a bunch of kids with a meth addiction, and we would get them off the bad path in doing some things with us, and then winter would come, and there is nothing to do in the winter,” Hinkley said. “My wife and I said we need a place year-round. I need to be able to be a part all the time.”
The journey of raising funds, building the entire park from the ground up and finding support has been a challenge.
“In the beginning, we were told, ‘You can’t make a free park, that’s not going to work, it’s not sustainable,” Hinkley said. “Everybody says you can’t afford to, but my answer is always you can’t afford not to when there are so many kids out there that need help right now.”
After help from so many in raising funds and putting in physical work, over 2,000 riders have come through this year alone, and many call this place home.
Hinkley said there are hundreds of people to thank, but there are three people who really helped make the Nowear indoor park a reality: Josh Larsen, a local contractor who helped with the BMX track; Sam Bussels, a pro rider and welder; and Jim Carveth, the biggest financial contributor and supporter.
“We are trying to make a judge-free area for any kid, with any background, so they can feel welcome and feel like they have friends,” Hinkley said.
All wheels and people are welcome.
“Karl and the group out here, no matter if your 5 or 54, they help you progress and are always here to help and teach,” said Landon Morris, a beginning BMX rider.
The fundraising isn’t over just yet.
Right now, there are no bathrooms out there, so Nowear is raising money to add some.
“We are two-thirds to our goal,” Hinkley said. “We still need to raise another $10,000.”