Tampa Pro is my favorite event of the year. And there are many reasons for that. You can get a tattoo or a massage right at the contest. You can get free drinks each day of the contest. And you can literally walk right up to hometown heroes like Jake Illardi or Olympic athletes like Felipe Gustavo and wish them luck. Yet, my favorite thing about Tampa Pro and as an extension visiting Skatepark of Tampa is the hospitality and love you feel when you walk into the shop, the park, or talk to anyone who works there or is a fan/spectator themselves.
Heading to the shop on Friday to buy a Tampa Pro tshirt to commemorate the event, we talked to one of the guys in the shop helping ring us up for the shirts.
“It’s true. We love everyone at Tampa Pro.”
Everything about the contest screams that message including this year the course design by french artist Lucas Beaufort.
It is true. I’ve been visiting the contest since 2006 and back then the contest was run by the SPOT, they had one hot dog cart and a beer cooler.
And I remember how cool I thought it all was.
Then, later that year, I returned to SPOT to be an extra in the indie film Street Dreams. It was ghetto for a movie set but this was my chance to be caught on camera next to the sport’s heavy hitters. We were filming a scene until all of a sudden Rob Dyrdek was in front of me and said that I had to move to the back of the scene. He put his hands on my shoulders as everyone in that hot metal warehouse was looking at me.
It was a surreal moment of divine timing and alignment. And those are commonplace for SPOT and at Tampa Pro but what stands out is that I always feel welcomed, accepted, and a part of something bigger than myself.
One thing is for sure at Tampa Pro, you will come for the hype and good vibes but you will leave with love in your heart, every single time.