Glendale Skatepark Opening Day

April 17th 2004 marks a great day in skateboarding for the Los Angeles area. The first new concrete vertical terrain to be seen in almost 20 years has just opened to the public.

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Hirata ollies over Ngoho rolling in
Glendale CA. Skatepark - Kidney Bowl

April 17th 2004 marks a great day in skateboarding for the Los Angeles area. The first new concrete vertical terrain to be seen in almost 20 years has just opened to the public. It’s not a little piece of vert either. It’s colossal! 3 bowls boast of vert walls with pool blocks and there are even 2 pockets with over vert settings. There are many walls sticking up out of the ground and a look out across the park has some very distinctive landscape that will make this park easy to identify in pictures and video.

I missed the early morning activities which involved more of the official City of Glendale ribbon cutting ceremonies. I guess they got pretty well rained out anyhow. As the day went on the rain stopped and the park crews got busy drying out the park. I found out a killer session ensued right up to the point when I pulled into the parking lot. A downpour started up about 4 o’clock and everyone ran for shelter. It looked like it wasn’t going to last and since I had already had the majority of my day rained out I was going to wait until it dried out.

In about another hour and some change they broke out the waivers and we were in skating! It was probably better this way so the crowds got a little thinned out. I ended up skating until 9:30 under the lights (YES THEY HAVE LIGHTS UP AND WORKING). Many of LA’s notable’s had been there earlier and some were back for more. Dave Duncan, Steve Olson, Pat Ngoho, Ben Schroeder, Benny Hirata, an exhausted Brian Patch, Ben Butler, James Rodriguez, Mad Dog, and tons of other came by to get some grinds in.

I warmed up in the kidney bowl for a while. This bowl has rad blue tiles, pool coping all around, and a deathbox. It’s a little strange at first glance because the deep end goes uphill. It is towering over you, but it not too hard to get up to the top with a spin through the shallow end where you can generate a ton of speed very quickly. Eveybody seemed to be able to adapt to the bowl pretty quickly and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Dave Duncan grinding the oververt Clamshell
The OG Steve Olson

The Clover bowl is where I sampled next. This thing is big! Metal coping lines 2 of the clovers, the shallow end and the square deep end. In the last pocket the lip rises up to an over vert pocket and is lined with pool coping. The overt vert in here is pretty mellow and not to hard to grind since the rest of the bowl is about 9 feet deep and easy to generate speed through.

The last area is a mixture of a street course, mini ramp, clamshell over vert pocket, a snake run, and a vert basin. This thing is squeezed in between and around the other 2 bowls. At the top end of this there is a bank drop off into a rail, a small mound, gap, or another bank whic all drop you into a pool coping lined tranny wall with a tombstone (left) and channel in the middle. This basin kind of flow down into the snake run where the clamshell lives next to a roll over mound and across from some small hips and lips. If you make it through this spot you’re well on your way into the 10ft. deep vert basin. This thing is really tall with pool coping on one side and really short with metal coping on the other. There is a love seat in the middle of the big wall and slanted wall on either end to bowl this thin out. It is pretty freaking sick if you can get a clear shot through the whole thing.

There are a lot of other little ledges and trannies sprinkled around the park. Lots of fun stuff on the back of the over vert pockets and channel trannies. They squeezed in little hits where ever they could. In this small 15,000 square foot park they really crammed in as much as they could and they did a killer job. I am happily going to be calling this place home for a good long while.

Many thanks to the City of Glendale for building this park for all of us skaters. Many more thanks to Site Design Group for designing, building, and pushing for more out of this project then originally planned. I think it really will help with future parks and projects around LA.

I’ll see you all out there!