I live in Houston and have worked as a nurse. I have a lifelong passion for traveling, nature, and photography (preferably all together!).
Lee and Joe Jamail Skatepark
Part of the Houston Parks and Recreation Department, this fantastic facility is called the Lee and Joe Jamail Skatepark.
The name comes from well-known and successful billionaire attorney Joe Jamail and his wife because of their generosity in donating funds towards its creation. The Jamails have been generous in their donations to many causes, this being just one example that bears their name.
The address is 103 Sabine Street, in downtown Houston, Texas 77007.
This stellar concrete facility is located near the Sabine Street Bridge near downtown Houston. There is now a parking lot that accommodates a fair number of vehicles. If it is full, there are nearby lots that can be accessed, particularly on weekends.
This skatepark is a part of Eleanor Tinsley Park that runs along Buffalo Bayou.
40,000 square feet of concrete offers beginner skateboarders a safe place to practice their sport.
It is also a location for advanced skateboarders to soar to extraordinary heights in what they can achieve. This is a world-class skateboard park! It is enormous in comparison to many other skateparks and is definitely Texas-sized!
It is open from 9 AM to 10 PM every day. Best of all, admission is free!
The cost of construction was reported to be $2,700,000.00. We are lucky to have such a site in Houston!
The approach to the skateboard park has some artwork that looks like graffiti but is showcased and somehow seems fitting to the site.
Too Old, But Still Young at Heart
My hubby and I are well past the age and stage of life in which we might wish to get on a skateboard and try our luck with this form of recreation. We would probably end up being in a local hospital in traction. Ha! That being said, just getting to tour this spectacular site in person was a treat!
Visiting the Skatepark
The first time my hubby and I visited this facility, it was on the weekend. As one might expect, it was packed with youngsters on their skateboards. We saw some extraordinary acrobatics accomplished!
Most of these photos were taken on a weekday when the skateboarding park was far less crowded.
The downtown Houston buildings make for a dramatic backdrop if photographing the skatepark from certain angles.
See a full tour of it in the video below:
Brief History of Skateboarding
No one can pinpoint an exact date, but the 1950s is when skateboarding first appeared on the streets in California and Hawaii. Surfers wished to do similar feats on hard surfaces as they were used to doing on the water.
The first skateboards were primitive. Rollerskate wheels were attached to a box or plank of wood. Over time, and with the popularity growing, companies started making skateboards.
- 1972 was a memorable date because of the urethane wheels created by Frank Nasworthy. His company was "Cadillac Wheels," and those type wheels are still used today on present-day skateboards.
- 1975 saw a magazine published by the name of Skateboarder Magazine.
- In the year 1976 in Munich, Germany, the first skatepark came into existence.
- By 1978, Alan Gelfand invented a trick that is still known today as the "Ollie." A skateboarder pushes down with force on the back of the skateboard and becomes airborne with the skateboard beneath the feet.
- In the 1990s, cash prizes of up to $200,000 were awarded to professional skateboarders.
- A Skateboard Hall of Fame exists which is in Simi Valley, California. Many people, both male and female, are memorialized for their extraordinary feats in this Skateboard Hall of Fame.
An entire industry is built up around this hobby turned professional sport, including not only the skateboards, but shoes, clothing, and protective gear.
Skateboarding was to have made its Olympic debut in Tokyo of 2020. Those games are now delayed due to the worldwide pandemic. Stay tuned to see them when the summer games once again take place.
My video of the Lee and Joe Jamail Skatepark on a weekday.
Watch some real action here!
- From Downtown Houston Org.: Lee and Joe Jamail Skatepark
- From Houston Parks Board: Lee and Joe Jamail Skatepark
- History of Skateboarding
- Skateboarding Hall of Fame
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Peggy Woods