Skateparks

Eric and Mia: Skatepark Artists Mini-Doc

Eric and Mia are the artists behind the public art project associated with our new skateparks. You probably remember their ‘zine and skateboard lessons for women and police officers. Here’s a mini-doc about the project:

Millennium Park Parking

We’ve had a lot of people ask about parking at Millennium lately. Parking in or near downtown Calgary can be tricky, so here are the public parking lots nearest to the park:

Lot 61, the “S” on the upper part of the map, is actually located further west and wraps around the former Science Centre building. Rates are:

Daytime Everyday (06:00 – 18:00):
$2.00 per 1/2 hour to maximum of $12.00 (Minimum purchase $2.00)

Purchases Everyday BETWEEN 16:00 – 06:00*
$1.00 per 1/2 hour to maximum of $3.00 (Minimum purchase $1.00)
*Daytime rates apply to all purchases made prior to 16:00 everyday. Daytime rates apply on these purchases until 18:00.

Notice: The only entrance and exit at Lot 61 is from 11 Street; the entrance from 6 Avenue is now closed.

Lot 64 is the one next to the armory. Its rates are:

Daytime Mon – Fri (06:00 – 18:00)
$1.75 per 1/2 hour to a maximum of $14.00 (Minimum purchase $1.75)

Daytime Sat, Sun (06:00 – 18:00)
$1.25 per 1/2 hour for the first 4 hours (Minimum purchase $1.25), $1.50 per 1/2 hour after the first 4 hours
Purchases Everyday BETWEEN 16:00 – 06:00*

$0.50 per 1/2 hour to maximum of $2.00 (Minimum purchase $0.50)

On Sundays, street parking is free (if you can find it). Take care if parking on private property– they can ticket or tow you at their discretion. People have reported getting tickets at Staples, so we don’t recommend parking there.

UPDATE: Westside Skatepark Opening May 3

UPDATE DUE TO WEATHER: The skatepark at Westside Rec Centre will open on May 1 May 3. Click the image to learn about their programming options.

Millennium Park Repairs

It’s no secret that Millennium’s infrastructure has seen better days. However, we’ve been working with the city’s parks department to recommend repairs and they’ve completed them.


If you see anything that needs attention at Millennium (or any other skateparks), please contact 311, preferably with a photo and description of the situation. Feel free to let us know too, so we can follow up.
Please refrain from making repairs or alterations yourself. Thanks!

 

Interview: Dan Kneeshaw

Anyone who knows Dan knows he rips on a skateboard. But sometimes when guys are really good at skateboarding, they act like jerks for some reason.
 
Well, Dan is the opposite of that. He’s genuinely a really nice guy. As a Calgary-based sales rep for Vans in Alberta, he has a pretty sweet job. Do we even need to mention he’s a multi-talented musician that is always in demand by several bands at a time? Read on to learn more about Dan.

Photo by Jeff Thorburn

Where are you from?

I was born and lived in Saskatchewan until I was 9. Then we moved to BC (Lumby, Vernon). Did all my growing up, skating and trouble making there.

How long have you been skating?

I started skating when I was 6-7 or so? My older step brother had a skateboard in the house growing up, and the second I saw it, I knew exactly what to do with it. Been obsessed ever since.

Where do you usually skate? Any favourite spots or parks?

You will usually find me at Huntington Hills park. That bowl is one of my favourites ever. I live super close to Southwood, and its growing on me. I go there when I want to pretend I can still skate street.. Favourite parks? Polson, and Coldstream in Vernon. I’ve put in some serious hours at those places.

Who do you skate with?

I grew up in the time when skating wasn’t really cool. So I skated mostly alone for like 10-12 years almost? Even now I usually just go to the spot, or park and I will just skate with who ever happens to be there. But I actually really enjoy skating alone, as weird as that may seem. Just always done it on my time, and my terms. Don’t get it twisted though, I still love skating with and running into the homies at all the parks! Riley Boland, Jesse Ingrilli, and Ben Renton and I seem to skate a lot together these days. Its pretty rad!

What brought you to Calgary?

That is a funny/long story.. But here is the shorter version. I had a pretty crippling addiction issue in my late teens that I am pretty open about. But I had been clean for a year and a bit, and needed a nice change.. I packed up my 93 Toyota Tercel with all my earthly belongings, and I had two choices. First was Vancouver with a place to stay in a packed party house, with no work or stability but lots of friends. Second was Calgary, where I had a room to rent and a job, but I had one friend in the entire city… So I flipped a quarter in my driveway. Heads=Calgary, Tails= Vancouver.. The rest is history. I made the right choice.

Photo by Tim Nelson

You work as a sales rep for Vans. How did you end up with a job like that? How long have you been doing that for?

I got extremely lucky.. I worked at skate shops for close to 8-9 years or so? Give or take.. The old sales rep (Stefan G) started giving me sample shoes every once in a while. To help push the shoes at the shop, and sort of ignite that fire, you know? It helped me out, more than he could possibly know.. So when Stefan left, the new guy (my now Boss) grandfathered me onto his sample flow program, and was super cool about me grabbing stuff when I needed it. Eventually I had left the shops, and was repping for another company at the time, and had called Dan (my Boss) about something. I happened to call him on the day that his sub-rep quit for another company. So we talked about it, decided we should do lunch the next day. By the end of that day I got an offer I couldn’t refuse.

A lot of people don’t know that it’s possible to make a living with skateboarding in some way in Calgary. What advice would you give to people that want to work in the skate industry?

Its totally possible. It just may look different to everyone. Wether thats working at a shop, starting up your own company, or what ever. Just don’t expect skateboarding to pay the bills. There are some people who skate around with a chip on their shoulder, giving the vibe they deserve a sponsorship or something. Skateboarding doesn’t owe you (anyone) anything. I believe that if you put your head down, work as hard as you can, on what ever you are passionate about, things will happen. Those things may not happen over night, and it may seem defeating at some points, but its all worth it. I owe everything I have, to skateboarding, and hard work.

You must get asked about sponsorship a lot. Why do you think so many kids just want to be sponsored? How many will actually make it? Any advice for kids who want to get hooked up?

Yeah, the sponsorship thing. This one is a tough one. If I had it my way, I would hook everyone up. Unfortunately, thats not possible. However, these are the things that I personally look for if a spot on the team opens up. A good attitude, is first and foremost for me. I don’t really want some one who’s focusing boards, or screaming at kids at the skate park to be representing my team. Gotta be approachable, friendly, and respectful. Second, style. Good style, weird style, but mostly I want to see YOUR style. I can go watch a million youtube videos of carbon copy skaters that all look/push/skate the same. Thats boring though, I want to see what YOU can do, and how YOU do it different. Third, skill of course. Push the limits, push yourself harder, get out of your comfort zone.

I think sponsorship to some is like a status symbol maybe? Im not sure. I don’t want to give some one something, when they aren’t grateful for it, or use it to put others down, if that makes sense? I want it to go to someone that needs it, and deserves it. Someone who has been grinding, and working for it.

As for who, and how many will make it.. Thats all up to them. I want them all to make it! I want my house to be littered with pro boards from kids who made it from Calgary. The caliber of skateboarding talent in this city, is astronomical. Everyday I am left scratching my head watching some young one annihilate the skate park. But Canadians gotta make here first, then they have to win over the states. Its not an easy task, but you can do it!! I believe in you! haha. Filming is huge. Get as many clips as you can. And photos too. Seems to be a dying art form unfortunately, but they are so important. And do your best to not post everything immediately to the internet!

Some advice to those looking to get hooked up(as if this answer wasn’t long enough). Like I said before. Attitude, goes a long way. Be nice to each other. Be supportive of our community. Be respectful of our parks, and spots. Skate as hard, and as often as possible. Film/shoot as much as you can. And mostly, have FUN! Thats what its really all about.

Photo by Cole Hadley

You’re involved in the music scene too. How long have you been playing?

Music has always gone hand in hand with skateboarding for me. I started playing guitar when I was 10, and I’ve been obsessed with it as well for most my life. I just have one band going at the moment, we go by Monolith A.B. Its a doom metal project I have been working on for 4 years or so. We are almost ready to record our first full-length album. We already did it once, and it was lost due to a computer error (another story, for another time). But we are excited to get down to it, and get it out finally.

What else are you into besides skating and music?

Motorcycles have been a huge part of my life since I was a kid. Fixing them, or riding them, I just love being around them. I also do a bit of Fly Fishing when I get the chance.

Any thanks/shout outs?

Thanks to my fiance Jess Doyle, Mama bear, and my sisters Jacklyn and Jenny for putting up with me. Those are the strongest women I have ever met, and they amaze me everyday.

Shoutouts to Mike Sharp, Nick Tempel, Dan Anderson, Stefan Goulet, Vans Canada, Arlen Smith, The Palomino, Blue Montgomery, Ben Renton, Riley Boland, Jesse Ingrilli, all the Huntington Hills locals, every one who has ever said whats up at the skate park, and anyone who has even been able to come to one of our shows. If we are friends, or acquaintances I am glad you are in my life.

Genesis Centre Skatepark Design

Here’s a look at the design of the Genesis Centre skatepark, scheduled to be built later this year. The city is hosting an open house where you’ll be able to ask questions at the Genesis Centre on April 26 from 6pm-9pm.

Genesis Centre Skatepark Open House April 26

As we mentioned back in February, the Genesis Centre in Calgary’s northeast will be the site of another outdoor concrete skatepark in the city. Plans are for summer 2017 construction.

The design concept for the new park will be on display at the Genesis Centre, 7555 Falconridge Blvd NE from April 24-29. There will also be an open house info session on April 26 from 6pm-9pm at the Genesis Centre, with city staff on site to answer any questions.

Westside Skatepark Open May 3

UPDATE DUE TO WEATHER: The skatepark at Westside Rec Centre will open on May 1 May 3. Click the image to learn about their programming options.

Skateparks in Calgary

CASE is not directly affiliated with any skateparks in Calgary. We advocate for new skateparks and skateboard friendly policies and legislation in Calgary on behalf of the Calgary skateboarding community, but we don’t own or manage any skate facilities.

Downtown:

  • Shaw Millennium Park – Calgary’s oldest skatepark is located on the site of the old Mewata Stadium, on the west side of downtown at Bow Trail/9th Ave between 14th and 11th Streets. It’s Canada’s largest at 75,000 square feet. The skatepark is open 24 hours a day; the greenspace surrounding the park adheres to regular park hours (5AM-11PM). Read more about it on the city’s skatepark site.

South East

  • Deer Run – 2223 146th Ave SE, next to Deer Run Community Centre. 2016 construction.
  • Midnapore – Midlake Blvd SE, next to Midsun Community Centre. 2016 construction.
  • New Brighton – 130 Ave SE, east of 52 St SE. Opened Summer 2016.
  • McKenzie Towne has a small modular park with mostly steel-framed ramps. View the park details here. It’s located at 200 McKenzie Towne Gate SE.

South West

  • CKE Skate Spot is about 5,000 of plaza style terrain located at the corner of Elbow Drive and 73 Ave SW.
  • Southwood – Sackville Drive SW, next to Southwood Community Hall. Opened Spring 2016.
  • Westside Rec Centre, located at 2000 69 St SW has a smaller modular skatepark that is open during the spring and summer months. The set up includes various street obstacles and a 40 foot wide mini ramp with a bank and two distinct sections. Read more at this link.
  • Woodcreek, a small modular skatepark built by area Community Associations separate from the Skateboard Strategy.

North East

  • Genesis Centre – skatepark is in the design process

North West

Mobile Skateparks

The City of Calgary operates the Mobile Skatepark Program during the summer months, generally starting in late June. There are a few parks that travel to all quadrants of the city. Check out this link for dates and locations.

Calgary Region Skateparks

There are a number of free outdoor skateparks in towns close to Calgary.

Skateboard Amenities Strategy

In spring 2017, the City will be moving into the construction phase of the last 2 parks of the first eight, as outlined in the Skateboard Amenities Strategy. You can read about how the initial skatepark sites were selected in this report. The City’s Skatepark Development website has some more information on it regarding these future skateparks.

 

Indoor Skateparks

Currently, Calgary has one indoor skatepark, The Compound, operated by Riders on Board Snowboard Club.

The city has had nearly a dozen indoor parks come and go, however. Places like Skatopia, All Skool, Four-O-Three, Skateworld, and Skate Jungle were all privately operated. It’s been proven that private indoor skateparks cannot exist in most cities. High overhead/operational costs combined with insurance costs make indoor parks a tough go financially.

skatopia

CASE has submitted proposals for indoor skateparks on two separate occasions. The first was for a location in Inglewood, the second for the former Science Centre building downtown.

skate-jungle

CASE is working constantly towards an indoor facility. We live in a city that is unskateable nearly half of the year. We hope to follow the models of parks like Le Taz in Montreal or the Regina Indoor Park. The cost of running a skatepark cannot be supported by user fees alone; a partnership is required. For example, a donated building.

source

Skatelife operates a temporary indoor skatepark every Tuesday night at Dalhousie Community Church. More info on their website:

skatelife

Video: Stay Down

Rob Thorpe is an OG Calgary skater who made a series of skate videos featuring the best Calgary skaters. Rob has donated copies to us so that we can put them on Vimeo.

The first video up is Stay Down (2002). Enjoy!

Stay Down from Calgary Skateboarding on Vimeo.

 

Donation to CASE

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