As part of Miami Arts Week, Mana Common has sponsored Infinity Plaza, which is a skateable art installation by Andrew Schoultz. It’s a permanent installation, although some of it appears to be made out of wood, so we all know how long that’s going to last. It opened on December 1st, so if you are in the Miami neighborhood (Mana Wynwood Convention Center 2217 NW 5th Avenue) you can check it out. If not, check out some pictures of the installation after the jump. The wall that looks like the tank has blasted hole through it has an interesting quality. It almost looks photoshopped in most of the pictures, but the detail view reveals it’s just a trick of the eye cause by high contrast decoration.
Sarasota has metal stick figure sculptures called Tube Dudes sprinkled all over town. I haven’t been to Payne Park in a handful of years. I don’t think this Tube Dude was there during my last visit. The baseball cap and basketball in hand are a bit of a head scratcher until you read the plaque dedicating it to “Coach Dan,” who must have been a basketball coach… who liked skateboarding?
Looks like the painfully accurate reconstruction of the Bro Bowl is more or less complete, but as is the case with most skateparks integrated into public parks, the rest of surrounding work is not finished, so the skatepark is off limits, and is in fact, a trespassing offense. It looks like the only thing not replicated was the 70’s era concrete finishing. WFLA Channel 8 in Tampa has the skinny.
Kona Skatepark needs work. The owner of the longest running private skatepark is trying to raise money for repairs to the park. The fundraising campaign is incredibly vague on what the 50k is going to be used for, instead pointing to a recent Folio Weekly article that sheds light on Kona’s interesting, sometimes troubled history as it approaches it’s 39th year in operation. For instance, the park declared bankruptcy twice in the first 18 months after opening in 1977. It was in limbo for 6 months before the the current owner’s (Martin Ramos) parents bought it. Economic downturns, wildly unfortunate personal accidents, and some questionable business decisions, all detailed in the article, make public funding for a privately owned skatepark a hard sell. Kona’s place in history and many skateboarders hearts might help it stay alive. Ramos has some interesting ideas to help keep the park afloat, some of which you’ve heard before that haven’t really worked for anyone else…
Skatepark builders are really stepping up their game when it comes to marketing on the Interwebs. Even the videos from some of the smaller design/build firms are getting slick. Here’s one from Team Pain, (by no means a small) covering a recently finished park in Lakeland Florida. Looks like a fun park, a little bit of something for everyone.
The news about the new skatepark design meeting in Tampa got me thinking about the Bro Bowl. Ages ago I posted about a Bro Bowl documentary that was in progress, so I decided to see if anything ever came from it. They finished it, and it’s available for viewing in it’s entirety. The opening sequence starts off a bit rough, but once you get past that, it’s pretty good. Notably missing, however, if an interview with the guy who designed and built the place, Joel Jackson. The Tampa Bay Times interviewed him in conjunction with the Bro Bowl being nominated for the National Register of Historic Places as one of only two 70’s era public skateparks still in existence in the USA. The par was originally surrounded by housing projects, but the whole area is slated for redevelopment. It’s not quite the same situation as Southbank, the redevelopment is in advance of a State of Florida Department of Transportation edict to widen the road adjacent to the skatepark. The city has advised locals to accept a the funding of a replacement park as the best possible outcome, over any temporary reprieve that activism may be able to achieve. The history of the neighborhood is complicated, not everyone (including skaters) want the the bowl saved. The documentary doesn’t really touch on any of this, instead choosing to tell stories about the sessions that went down. So while it’s not super informative, it’s still entertaining. Watch it after the jump.
Bradenton, Florida has a relatively new Team Pain skatepark on the riverwalk. It’s mostly waist high or under, with the exception of a 10ft or so vert wall on one end of the park and a large bowl on the opposite. The park is long and narrow, dissected in the middle by an overhead highway bridge that crosses the river. As with Louisville, KY, it’s more or less across the street from the hospital. I’m not sure if they do that on purpose or not. It’s on a stretch of land that would otherwise most likely be vacant, which means plenty of room for expansion! The non-skating locals I spoke with are very pleased with it, and consider it a destination worth hanging out at just to watch and enjoy the location. More photos and a video skate through after the jump.
This video is not nearly as annoying as I had assumed it would be, but that does not mean I’m going to buy/download/pirate Flo Rida’s Wild Ones album. I can’t believe that’s what he picked as his rap name. That’s the Goat Ramp in the top shot.
– Thanks to… How did I find this?