Tribute to NYC street skating
The city that never sleeps
Since the dawn of street skating, New York City's greater five boroughs have played home to thousands of skateboarders visiting to search, explore and adapt their skateboarding to the various terrains offered throughout the city. With an ever-evolving cityscape and the unclaimed architecture of yesteryear, New York City has inspired some of the most original street skateboarding in the world, and that is a large reason why legends such as Mark Gonzales have claimed the place as home. Here, XGames.com pays tribute to the city that never sleeps and the skateboarding created within. First up is visiting Baker am Tristain Funkhouser, bean planting under the shadow of the Manhattan Bridge.
Testing out Flushing Meadows
Aside from the Brooklyn Banks, which have been closed for years, Flushing Meadows might be the most recognizable NYC skate spot (and not far from the nearby U.S. Open). The area surrounding the globe has granite ledges, which have been skated for years in videos, magazines and now on Instagram. The Unisphere was originally built for the New York World's Fair in the 1960s, but it's since become a symbol of iconic NYC ledge skating. Here, Luis Tolentino tests out a ledge.
Order in the court
Located in lower Manhattan, Foley Square is home to an iconic courthouse, smooth marble ledges and -- on the right day -- propped-up doors in the sidewalk for maintenance to service the subway system. Here, John Gardner takes advantage of an opportune moment. The United States Courthouse in the background has also seen its fair share of skating, and it was also featured in "The Godfather," along with countless other movies and television shows.
It's not all street skating though
Brooklyn local Fritz Mead constructed his own bedroom in the back of the house he rents, then used the foundation of the room as the base for a backyard bowl. Here, he frontside ollies out of the bowl. Notice that the backyard trees were included in the construction of the bowl.
Stop for traffic
Simply skating through the streets of New York City is an art in itself, but getting a trick done in hectic traffic can be especially difficult. Here, locals hold off oncoming traffic for Zered Bassett's wallie to gap into the street.
Safe and secure
Skating New York City takes some seasoned street knowledge because you will get chased off by security at most spots -- especially when on federal property. Here, Jed Anderson evades federal security in downtown Manhattan.
One of the toughest parts of NYC skating is the weather. From October through April, the city that never sleeps can be windy, rainy, snowy or any combination of most severe elements that one can think of. For this reason, the locals take advantage of the warmer months. And in that first week of spring, there's a certain renewed energy among the locals. Here, Frankie Spears gets in a smith grind under newly bloomed trees.
The Manhattan bridge connects lower Manhattan with downtown Brooklyn, and it's not very skate-friendly because of speed bumps along the pedestrian path. Luckily, the rails next to the bridge are skateable. Here, Tiago Lemos gets in a stylish nosegrind.
How does New York City celebrate the arrival of the Street League crew when the annual competition visits nearby Newark, New Jersey, each year? They get skateboarders to ring the closing bell for the NASDAQ Marketsite. That's big time.
Once upon a time in lower Manhattan, the rails atop a marble ledge adjacent to the one pictured were removed by an anonymous source so they could be skated more easily. Word spread quick, the spot blew up over the next few months and new rails were later installed to prevent skating. Ben Kado saw past that and simply ollied over the whole ledge.
The iconic, gritty architecture of New York City such as 190 Bowery, combined with an abundance of metal, grindable ledges, will always create some of the most unique photos in skateboarding. Here, Clark Hassler gets in a caveman nosegrind tailgrab for extra style points.
A collection of photos devoted to NYC skateboarding wouldn't be complete without going underground. Here, Wes Kremer, Evan Smith and Tristan Funkhouser have some fun on an empty subway car somewhere on the way into lower Manhattan.