Thursday, August 3, 2017
One summer night in late July a bunch of us were skateboarding here. It was the same week the county fair was in town. In the distance I see this kid pushing down the street towards the bank. It looks like he's got one of his shirt sleeves rolled up. Once he gets to the spot, it turns out he had his shirt sleeve rolled up because he had just gotten a Blind Reaper tattoo at the fair. His upper arm was wrapped in cellophane and he didn't want to mess up the new ink.
The bank used to offer more to skate than it does currently. There was a long manual pad that ran the length of the building, roughly where the flowers and shrubs are now. It ended where the parking lot meets the sidewalk with a small drop so you could do tricks off the end. It varied in width from maybe two feet at the thinest in the back to about ten feet at the widest so you had options to practice skating on two wheels. It was pretty cool. There were some waxed up parking blocks, too. For the life of me, I don't remember where the parking blocks were exactly. I also don't remember what bank had their branch here since it changed ownership in the early 2000s.
There was also a set of stairs. The runway was rather limited, but it was something to jump down. I imagine somebody bonked their nose or did a caveman onto the tiny rails at some point.
This odd ledge was there, too. It was on a slight incline so that added a degree of difficulty to tricks. It's not a square edge either so that didn't help. I know I liked to do frontside 50-50s up it, for as little up as there is. The right side still has a decent coat of wax, but we only ever skated the left side. Kids these days. Not that I've seen any kids skating here in a long time.
The bank is an example of what happens to architecture as the years pass. Things change and are simplified so skateboarding isn't even possible due to a lack of anything creative in front of a building. Although I doubt the designers for a small town bank ever even considered skate proofing a spot. I suppose there is a still a little gap over the flowers and the curb would be fine with a thick coat of wax. This was a fun spot back in the 1990s and a lot of late night sessions went down here. The bust factor was minimal, which I find odd now because the police station is literally across the street. You maybe just want to think twice about getting a tattoo at the fair.