The growing skateboarding scene in Columbia, SC


Photo of Owen’s Field Skate Park | Photo by COLAtoday team

Who would think in the town of Columbia, SC there would be a thriving “core” skate scene? Well, we have one, and it’s growing.

We met with David Toole (you may know him as David Bluetile) the owner of Bluetile Skateshop in Five Points to get the perspective of Columbia’s skate culture from those active within it. We also wanted to showcase how Cola’s skaters have developed + influenced civic decision making to benefit Columbia’s community as a whole.


The inside of Bluetile Skateshop | Photo by COLAtoday team

David opened Bluetile almost 21-years-ago with $3,000 in his pocket. His goal was to change the narrative around skateboarding and the public perception of the growing sport. He began advocating for a skatepark + hosting meetings — focused on building relationships within the community before raising capital.

“It took a while, but once everyone saw this community that reached 5 to 50-year-olds, we got a few folks on board,” David said.

It took five years to build Owen’s Field Skatepark (1351 Jim Hamilton Blvd.) which opened in 2010, thanks to the help of David and a few other local advocates. During our conversation, Irving Juarez, a member of the Cola skate scene, said, “Skateboarders are motivated to do more, build more, and we’re persistent.”

Chris Cryer, another skater in the room, agreed by saying, “Yeah, skateboarding is really all about comradery, connection, and community.”

Irving, Chris, and David have been supporters of skateboarding in Columbia, and below are two other skatepark developments showing how skaters have developed a rich, community culture.

🛹 Friarsgate Skate Park


Photo of Low Block DIY Park | Photo by COLAtoday team

🛹 Low Block DIY Skatepark

  • Local skaters have rolled up their sleeves — we’re talking digging up, cleaning up, and fixing up this area of Columbia. Everything added to this park has come from the skate group in Columbia They’ve collectively put in the time, effort, and money to make this park safe + clean for those wanting to take part. Note: For more information about this park, message the community on its Instagram page.

Did we mention the adidas Skateboarding team came to Low Block to skate its flat bars, bank to ledges, quarter pipes, and curbs? Watch the video here.