Columbia celebrates opening of Friarsgate Skatepark in Rawls Creek Park

Community-built skatepark celebration

Columbia sees the creation of Friarsgate Skatepark in Rawls Creek Park

The much-anticipated Friarsgate Skatepark in Columbia has officially opened its gates this week. Situated inside the Rawls Creek Park (1113 Friarsgate Blvd.), the skatepark has drawn large crowds of skateboarders, scooterists, roller skaters, and BMXers from across the state. The realization of this state-of-the-art skatepark is the result of years of the community working together with a shared vision and goal.

A Dream Turned Into Reality

The idea for the Friarsgate Skatepark started a few years ago with a group of parents weary of long-distance travel for skateboarding. They began to envision a dedicated space for skateboarding within their community. Their idea was met with robust support from the Town of Irmo which subsequently initiated plans for an 8,500 sqft skatepark. The project, which was part of a larger recreational project, was propelled forward thanks to funding, as well as partnerships with 5th Pocket Skateparks.

Laying the Groundwork

The Columbia skateboarding scene has been flourishing over the years, becoming a vibrant hub for the culture. Advocates like David Toole, owner of Bluetile Skateboards, have played crucial roles in strengthening skateboarding’s position within the local civic landscape. Successful initiatives such as the Owens Field Skatepark and the DIY Low Block park further paved the way for the Friarsgate project, underlining the power of local activism and community perseverance.

Design and Execution

The design and execution phase kicked off with the collaboration of the Town of Irmo, the Irmo Skate Park Committee, and 5th Pocket Skateparks. Incorporating community suggestions, the park’s design was progressively finetuned to ensure an inclusive space for skaters of all expertise levels.

The Fruition

The newly finished skatepark is a shining testament to the community’s resilience and camaraderie. Alongside the skatepark, Rawls Creek Park includes a community garden, dog parks, and new amenities. However, as other sections of the park are still under development, the park will be closed temporarily through Friday, May 10.

Updates and announcements about the park can be found on the official Friarsgate Skatepark Facebook page. Clips from local skaters who have already visited the new park can be viewed on the park’s Instagram account.

Columbia celebrates opening of Friarsgate Skatepark in Rawls Creek Park

Author: HERE Irmo

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