#TampaPro2022: It’s All Love At Tampa Pro

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.

March 12, 2006: My first Tampa Pro contest with the legendary Shecks!

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.

Third Place: Jake Illardi, 23, Osprey, FL
Congrats to the winner: Jamie Foy, 25, of Deerfield Beach, FL been coming out to Tampa Pro since 2017.

Viewing Tampa Pro Through The Eyes of a Spectator

If you are looking for greatness, where would you picture you would find it?

Most people picture greatness as Olympic athletes and during Sunday night football but I’ve been visiting a place that’s full of greatness all year long.

William Shakespeare is famously known for the quote from his play The 12th Night, “Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon ’em.” 

Greatness is easy to see and spot at the Skatepark of Tampa specifically during the annual Tampa Pro contest.

Each year for the past 27 years, the Skatepark of Tampa has hosted the Tampa Pro skateboard contest. The prize has greatly increased since the first one, and both the sport and the venue have evolved with the constant progression of the times but you can expect to go to the local skatepark on the West Coast of Florida and be inspired, be handed a free beer, and a chance to tell your favorite skater how much that backside smith grind down the hubba they did in their last run, stoked you from head to toe.

Here is what a weekend at the Skatepark of Tampa looks like during Tampa Pro weekend. Welcome To Town parties start Thursday evening followed by trivia usually at the Bricks in Ybor City. Yes, that means you can share a pitcher of beer with Mark Appleyard or Mike Valleley, it’s a free country and you can do it.

As an avid 17 year fan of street skateboarding who doesn’t actually skate, people ask me all the time what I love about skateboarding or about the Tampa Pro.


For me, this year I was insanely moved by Felipe Nunes. Seeing out there on the course killing it made me feel that this is a place and an event where anyone can come and feel like they are a part of something greater than what they are currently facing in their day to day life. Sure, books, music, and movies are a great escape but hands down, I’d rather be at the skatepark during Tampa Pro weekend.

Two young guns smile from ear to ear because they are stoked to be here!
a super fan asking for a pro’s autograph.

Whether it’s your first time or you’ve been here 10 times, Tampa Pro is an event that’s high vibrational, continuously gets better every year, and even allows women skateboarders to compete. One thing is for sure, it certainly will have you coming back again next year because everyone who’s anyone can come and just hang loose.

Thanks Paul and all who put on such a fun time down in hot and sunny Tampa, FL. I can’t wait for next year’s event in April.


Watch my entire weekend from start to finish.