It is officially “Skateboard Week in Vancouver” according to a proclamation made by the Vancouver Park Board on behalf of the City. I remember the days when Vancouver outdoor staircases, plazas, fountains, and buildings were being retrofitted with skateboard-proof knobs and bumps. My, how we’ve come a long way.
“Skateboarding has come so far. Only ten years ago it was illegal to skateboard in the streets. Boarders were being ticketed and skateboards were being confiscated. Skateboarders were buying boards with no place to use them,â€ said Park Commissioner Sarah Blyth. â€œNow itâ€™s a whole new scenario.â€ These days, the city is working closely with the Vancouver Skateboarder Coalition (VSBC).
Blyth says the city and VSBC is working on a skateboard strategy to improve their skateboardersâ€™ situation. So far there has been a great deal of progress. Over the past ten years six new parks have been created. The relaxation on the ban on skateboarding in the streets has turned the city into a Mecca for skateboarders. [VSBC]
It’s a little-known fact that I grew up reading Transworld Skateboarding and could routinely be seen clipping and pasting Thrasher articles to the corkboard in my teenage bedroom. I’ve always loved the skateboard culture (from kickflippers to those leisurely longboarders) so this is great news for the local community. I spent many summer days at local skate parks, albeit perfecting my BMX skills, and have seen my fair share of amateur videos from packs of skaters showing off their skills outside the Toys R Us on Whalley Ring Road.
It’s also been great to see the evolution of the Vancouver Skateboard Coalition and the way its interacted with the community. To finish off Skateboard Week with a bang, they’ll celebrate National Go Skateboarding Day this Sunday by hosting Wild in the Streets and a few other special events.