Board shop's new location offers indoor skatepark
By KAITLIN STROHSCHEIN
Port Orchard Independent Reporter
September 9, 2011 · Updated 9:21 AM
Richard Anderson plans to open Port Orchard’s first skatepark at some point this week.
It won’t be free. And it will be inside a 6,000-square-foot store.
But Anderson, 20, believes that it can compete with a 25,000-square-foot facility that the county plans to eventually build, for $1 million, at South Kitsap Regional Park down the street.
Anderson’s facility, inside a retail storefront for Impact Skate Shop, has several advantages over the park, he says.
For one, it will be complete.
“The park on Jackson and Lund keeps not getting done,” Anderson said. “We figured the kids needed something now.”
“I’ve watched people go from 16 to graduating, and the park’s still not done.”
The skatepark in Impact Skate Shop, on the corner of Jackson and Mile Hill Drive next to Spiro’s Pizza, took about two months to complete.
Anderson also thinks it’s an advantage that he built his skatepark out of movable wood pieces, so that it can be reconfigured when the skateboarders get tired of the old setup.
“You can’t change a concrete park,” he said. “We can listen to what the kids want and change things.”
It will also have a nicer atmosphere with a concession counter and an area set up with sofas and a TV for kids to watch, he said.
“It’s a safe spot for kids to go and be with kids with some supervision,” he said, and the skateboarders will prefer skating inside, rather than outside, at night and in the winter.
“Even when it’s snowing outside, they can still skate,” at Impact Skate Shop, he said.
The skatepark is part of a reincarnation of Impact Skateboards, which formerly operated in a smaller storefront near the QFC grocery store on Mile Hill Drive.
Besides adopting a new name and a skatepark, the new version of the store has a different business model — with three different types of store memberships.
The “retail” membership costs $5, and features discount prices on shoes, skateboards, shirts and other skateboarding gear sold in the store.
The “monthly basic” membership costs $5 for the first month and $10 for each month after that. Monthly members get one free skate session and $2 off skatepark entry fees, pay member prices on store merchandise and pay discounted entry fees for competitions.
A yearly membership costs $60, and offers the same incentives as the monthly membership.
Skateboard rentals and lessons will be available for an additional cost.
The grand opening — featuring giveaways and lessons — is scheduled for Oct. 1.
During the grand opening, Impact Skate Shop hopes to find a “skate team” of local skateboarders to sponsor. The team would represent the store at local skateparks.