A Personal History of RPAC

My friend John Sims runs an Instagram account that posts old footage of skateboarding in Columbus, Ohio. I put this together for him: I started skating with the Worthington crew (Kaleb Mericle, Michael Hodges, Max Growick, Alex Hegerty, Alex Garcia,…

A Personal History of RPAC

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My friend John Sims runs an Instagram account that posts old footage of skateboarding in Columbus, Ohio. I put this together for him:

I started skating with the Worthington crew (Kaleb Mericle, Michael Hodges, Max Growick, Alex Hegerty, Alex Garcia, Carl Hackman, a few others) in 2005, after I met them at the newly opened Powell skatepark.

They told me about how the new OSU recreation center was an amazing skate spot. Since we were all still in high school the only time we could really skate there without getting kicked out was super early on the weekends. I tagged along with them on a few missions, even though 6AM was wayyyy too early for me to skate successfully. The first time I went there, it really blew my mind, it was the most perfect skate spot I had ever seen. Although, the main attractions of RPAC, the hubba and the three block were too gnarly for me, so I had to stick to skating some of the ledges and other things around the building.

During the summer of 2006 we were still skating RPAC pretty regularly, going on late night missions. Kaleb in particular always wanted to go there, he had lists of tricks he wanted to do down the three block. Kaleb’s kickflipped it multiple times, but the one that he filmed is one of my favorite kickflips ever. He stomps it with such authority. Nollie Hardflip was one of Kaleb’s go-to tricks and I used to make fun of them cause I thought it was a wack trick. But it seems like he was just ahead of the curve, cause now it’s come back into fashion. I’ll admit I’ve come around to them, but varial flips will always look like dogshit to me no matter how many people do them nowadays!

We started skating RPAC less and less as the novelty of the spot wore off and we really only went there when someone had a particular trick in mind. In September 2007 we were partying at my friend David’s house and Kaleb got it into his mind that he wanted to go to RPAC. He had been claiming the 360 nosegrab for a while, and, despite consuming various substances, he got it that night.

At this point I haven’t skated RPAC in 8 or so years and don’t especially miss it, but thinking about the spot reminds me of some of the first times skating with the people that have become life-long friends.

Skaters:
Kaleb Mericle
Max Growick
Stuart Inamura

Filming:
Michael Hodges

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