Grinding it out at the skate park

Weekly skate competitions in July coming to a close with the final event next Tuesday evening.

Angus Pitts hits a 5-0 grind on one of the cement block obstacles at the Viking Youth Park on Tuesday night.

Angus Pitts hits a 5-0 grind on one of the cement block obstacles at the Viking Youth Park on Tuesday night.

So you think you can skate?

All you gotta do is take your board down to the Viking Youth Park and hit the ramps and rails on Tuesday nights.

If you can stomp the gnarliest tricks, then you could get in on $200 in prize money.

A competition kicks off in the park every Tuesday evening in July,  where riders throw down their best tricks in the bag during a friendly competition against fellow skaters.

Along with the prize money, there are other cash prizes for best trick and lots of apparel like decks and clothing that are up for grabs.

The competition works like the childhood game of horse—riders follow the leader’s trick and if anyone messes up, a letter is added to their score. First person to spell the word ‘skate’ is out.

Sponsored by local board shop The Choice, the event is entering it’s seventh year, according to Mike Peabody.

“Before I started at The Choice, they’d do one or two skate comps a year and we were just trying to find a way to support the scene a little bit better,” said Peabody. “So we figured we’d do a free competition with prizes—we used to do it every Thursday night in July, now we do it every Tuesday.

“[It’s] just something fun to support the the sport.”

Being that the competition has gone on every July for seven summers, Peabody has watched young kids grow up in the park.

“It’s pretty cool,” said Peabody. “The first year we were doing it, some of the kids are taller than me now, when they were only up to my hip then.

“It’s really neat to see that they’re still skateboarding for one, and still here tonight.”

Though there hasn’t been another skateboarder who can match the skills of Cranbrook native Paul Machnau—who started Boarder’s Choice back in the 1990s and went on to skate pro—there is still some young aspiring talent.

“Clayton Parsons, he works for the shop now, and he’s one of the better skateboarders in town, and he used to be one of those little kids who’d show up with his helmet on,” said Peabody.

There will be one last session next Tuesday evening that will feature a few guests from the Okanagan as part of an event called Road Rage—where skaters from across Western Canada get together tour around to hit up different competitions.


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