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CITY Visits...The ROC City Skatepark

By and


We chatted with skateboarders, roller skaters, and BMXers at Rochester's sweatiest hotspot.

Photos by Lauren Petracca. Interviews by David Andreatta.
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CASEY THESING, 38,
GREECE, 8TH GRADE TEACHER

How long have you been skating?
“I started skating in August 2017. My daughter was riding her bike in the driveway and my in-laws had an old skateboard in their garage and I just started standing on it.”

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ALVIS "THRASHER" RODRIGUEZ, 26
ROCHESTER, DISHWASHER

What's with the "Thrasher" tattoo?
"I call myself 'Thrasher' because I like to thrash. I'm a big fan of Thrasher Magazine and thrasher videos."

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JAZIERE BAKER, 23
ROCHESTER, DINOSAUR BAR-B-QUE HOST



How often are you at the skatepark?
"I come like once or twice a week. It's pretty lively, pretty friendly also. Everyone helps each other out."

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NICK PARLET, 36
WEBSTER, PLUMBER

You're here whenever you aren't working? What keeps you coming back?
"It's built right. Even in Buffalo, they build them, but not this nice. That bowl is something crazy we got."

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CALEB BURTO, 19
GREECE, AUTO PARTS BUYER AND SELLER

When you say you've been skating your whole life, what do you mean?
“I mean pretty much my whole life. Instead of watching cartoons when I was a child, my dad put on skate videos for me and that would calm me down. I’d be crying watching cartoons, the second a skate video came on, I would stop.”


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LINDSAY "PEACH" SANDERSON, 31
GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN, TATTOO ARTIST ASSISTANT

Michigan? What are you doing here?
"Yeah, I traveled here from Michigan. I'm on my way to New England to visit friends but I mapped out my trip to stop here for the skatepark. I had to see it."

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JOSHUA LOPEZ, 18
ROCHESTER, CHARLOTTE HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT

What's it like dropping into that bowl?
“It’s pretty exciting. When you first try it it’s a little scary. But once you get used to it you start to mellow out and it starts to get really fun.”

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TRAVIS SMITH, 21
GATES, FURNITURE BUILDER

How long have you wanted a skatepark like this?
“I’ve been waiting for this place for 15 years. . . . As soon as this place got built, I found my little friend group and we’ve pretty much formed into a family.”

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MEKO FLOWERZ, 23
ROCHESTER, MODEL

Where are you skating when you're not here?
"I can jam skate, street skate, park skate. I’ve skated through water before. I’ve off-roaded on my skates. My skates are so busted up my boots are coming off the frame.”

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SCOTT HAAG, 31
BRIGHTON, HOME INSPECTOR

How often do you come here and how would you describe it?
"I try to come here every day. It's like a family vibe. Like, I know everybody here except a couple of random people."

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JONAH SIEGEL-EDELMAN, 28
LUCCA SIEGEL-EDELMAN, 1

ROCHESTER, CHEF AT LOCALS ONLY

Your son looks like he's enjoying himself.
“He loves when he hears all the skateboarding happening. All the click and clack of the deck hitting the ground and the grinding on the coping of the trucks. He likes to see all the movement and stuff. It’s pretty good stimulation for him, I’d say.”

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JASON SCOTT, 18
ROCHESTER, EAST HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATE

What's your favorite move?
"My favorite move is a heel flip. It's like a kick flip but the other way. It's harder. It's what I'm known for."

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LIANA TORIC, 20
PENFIELD, RESTAURANT SERVER

How long have you been skating?
“Around nine months. I always wanted to skateboard ever since I was a little kid, but I was always very intimidated because it’s very male-dominated.”

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KEANU PAGANO, 21
OXNARD, CALIFORNIA, RIT STUDENT

What's your favorite move?
“I really like airing and 180-ing. It just feels timeless and you’re stuck in that motion and then you come right back down.”

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EVAN PORFIRIO VASQUEZ, 26
ROCHESTER, AUDIO ENGINEER 

Describe what you feel when you get on the board here.
“I worked a 12-hour shift before I came here. It’s like a kinetic meditation. My buddy Boop, he’ll take a picture when he’s at the park and post it, and be like, ‘I’m at my therapist’s office.’ That’s how I feel.”

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