Skate Parks Abound in North Texas
It’s not a team sport and it has a bit of a counter-culture edge, but it you think skateboarding is not an athletic pursuit, think again. Increasingly popular for a variety of reasons, some Metroplex communities have installed great public parks.
The Dallas-Fort Worth area may be more friendly for swimmers, football players, soccer enthusiasts, and joggers than it is for skateboarders, but if you’re really enamored of the blades and boards, there are a few spectacular parks where you can spend an afternoon practicing your moves. These modern, safe, and attractive practice parks are pretty far removed from popular neighborhoods. But if the neighborhood kids gather up their gear, visiting one of these Metroplex skate parks would make for a great group excursion.
Mainstream Sport? Well, No!
Skateboarders are proud of their anti-establishment culture. They still sometimes “proudly annoy pedestrians,” but the dedicated Dallas-Fort Worth skateboard parks, both public and private, attract throngs of young and not-so-young enthusiasts. The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex has a handful of great parks in the area, with some new projects planned. Check these out:
- Central Park in Azle: a good concrete slab beginner park with pre-fab ramps and quarter-pipe, rails, and ledges. Azle is located in the northwest corner of Tarrant County, about 15 miles northwest of downtown Fort Worth, near Eagle Mountain Lake.
- Lakeland Hills Skate Park in Dallas: built in 2007 as the first public skate park in the area. Located not far from White Rock Lake, it’s also an outdoor beginner-style park, built with concrete and metal. Lakeland Hills Skate Park has many obstacles and a few rails and ledges, but it gets really hot in the summer.
- Irving’s Lively Point: Located between Dallas and Fort Worth, this 20,000-foot-plus facility features the first cradle in Texas with enough features to appeal to all skaters. There is an amoeba bowl with a shallow entrance, a plaza and street elements, grind edges, and hubba ledges. It’s fun and free, open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
- Railroad Park in Lewisville: a great park, with 33,000 square feet of surface and a large flow section. The central bowl is constructed on concrete with brick edges, and it’s as attractive as it is challenging, with metal coping, handrails, stairs, ramps, quarter-pipes, half-pipes, and ledges, funboxes, and pyramids. It’s definitely worth a trip.
- The Edge at Allen Station: Superlatives describe this big park. It’s the largest in the state, at almost 38,000 square feet, and it attracts crowds. It also has lighting for nighttime skateboarding, and does not require pads or helmets. Skaters should be sure to wear them, though, because the park features bowls ranging from 6 to 9.5 feet deep, with street courses, stairs with handrails, boxes, ramps, and ledges. The Edge allows bikes with covered pegs. Shade and fountains are available for boarders and spectators. The Edge is open from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Training and Gear
If you need proper gear to pursue this sport, you’ll find what you need at numerous shops around the area. You can also visit the Action Park Alliance. This group also has skate parks in Grand Prairie and Lewisville and offers summer training camps for kids who improving their skills.
The Overground skatepark project in Dallas, located on South Ervay, has both indoor and outdoor sections. As a spectator here, you will be sure to hold your breath on occasion. You will, at the least, gain new respect for skateboarding skills. There is a pro shop on site, and you can check on lessons and camps.
Photo Source: Flickr