I was coming back home this afternoon, and as I was exiting the main highway to take the seaside road facing Forum de Beyrouth, when I noticed something really cool: a skate park!
Naturally, I parked right in front of it and took the liberty of snapping a few shots you will find below. After I had toured the facility myself, I found Mr. Gilbert Abi Rashed, the founder of this skate park, and asked him a few questions.
What I learned from Gilbert is that a smaller Skate Park was operated by him outside Beirut, and as soon as he got the chance to move into the capital, he bought new elements and refurbished his existing ones and moved into the large parking lot across the street from Art Lounge.
Gilbert’s dismay was clear though, for despite his efforts, real funding or sponsorship has yet to emerge, and amid the extremely high rent of this extreme skate park, his hopes are undoubtedly set on the rising number of skaters in Lebanon.
Naturally, I asked if he taught too, or if it was just a venue for those who already knew how to BMX, skate, roller-blade or scooter. The IISA level 2 skater (I didn’t know what this either, so I googled it and here’s what I found) offers private lessons to anyone willing. As for just using the facility, the fee is a mere 10$ for the whole day. I’m not a skating professional myself, but that sounds pretty fair (correct me if I’m wrong).
Anyway, I just thought this was insanely cool and I’m going back this weekend, to take a few shots of the official opening weekend (May 6, 7 and 8). So, if you are reading this and are a skater, why not check it out?
They also have a Facebook page if you wanna know more, and below are photos I took today