The Cape Breton Regional Municipality (CBRM) Recreation Department presents CBRM Skate Barbeque, taking place at Island Skatepark in Coxheath on Saturday, August 29, from 12-3pm.
The event will mark the close of the inaugural CBRM Skateboard Program, a free skateboard instructional program that ran through July and August at the Coxheath, North Sydney, and Glace Bay skateparks. The CBRM Skateboard Program featured eight internationally certified skateboard instructors providing safety and skills training to participants over five weeks.
“There is a significant amount of talented skateboarders in the CBRM,” says Recreation Program coordinator Joe Costello. “We have skateboard facilities in nearly every community in the CBRM. Now we have the chance to break down the entry barriers of the sport by providing mentorship and inspiration, and have these facilities used to their fullest potential.”
The first step in breaking down these barriers and giving local skaters a spot to practice their passion came in the early 2000’s when skater and entrepreneur Darcy Campbell of I-Land Skates, and various community groups, convinced the powers that be at CBRM that there was a need for these facilities. Then, working with CBRM Recreation Department’s Frank Bruleigh and Fred Brooks, Campbell and I-Land Skates employee Steve Wadden got to work designing, building, or project managing skatepark construction in Dominion, Glace Bay, Coxheath and at St. Anthony Daniel’s (SAD) in Sydney.
“We have stuff here that is good, and it is producing its first generation of mature skaters right now,” says veteran skater, filmmaker, photographer and musician Harry Doyle, who is currently working on a year-long photography project, documenting his 28th season of skating. “The Coxheath park and SAD park are now old enough to have produced great local skateboarders. So now you see the young guys starting out and see how they will use the parks over the years.”
The CBRM Skate Barbecue will feature a free hot dog barbecue, live music by Rolling Ocean Mind and The High Tide, and a best trick competition. The best trick will feature a division for youth who participated in the instructional program, youth aged 14 and under, and skateboarders 15 and older. There are a variety of prizes, including new decks and wheels for the winners of the veteran divisions.
The event is open to all spectators, with the skateboarding and music alternating through the day. All skateboarders must register on site and are required to wear a helmet in order to participate in the competition.