Skatetown USA in Fort Pierce will stay open, for now, thanks to generous donations

Posted at 10:45 PM, Jul 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-07 23:44:07-04

FORT PIERCE, Fla. -- There is new hope for a beloved Fort Pierce business to stay open thanks to an outpouring of support from the community.

Skatetown USA owner, Harry Stuart, feared he would have to lock his doors for good by July 9, following a financial crisis that developed over the years.

Stuart described experiencing hard times during an economic downfall years ago, and more recently, tough treatment from his bank.

But thanks to fundraising efforts from the community, and generous individual donations, Stuart says he has raised nearly $25,000.

“It’s just been overwhelming.”

It is enough, he says, to keep him afloat a little longer.

Some donations were large. Other donations were all some people had.

“We had kids showing up with their allowance. Three kids, the total of the three was only 18 dollars but it was all they had,” Stuart described.
It was a touching reminder for Stuart that he has served countless families over the years, and they appreciate his business.
“Maybe we were important to them and it wasn’t just about Harry Stuart and his family. It was about the kids in Fort Pierce,” Stuart said.

He says parents have told him that because of his rink, their children stayed out of trouble and had something to look forward to.

Stuart says the donations will help him stay open several more months, but ultimately, he needs to raise much more money.

In the meantime, he’s considering looking for new financing and hoping for a busy, profitable summer.