Riverwalk exceeds expectations for those who love the outdoors

March 4, 2013 

Skating on the Riverwalk is a real treat

Since its debut in October, the Riverwalk along the Manatee River in downtown Bradenton has exceeded our wildest imaginations as a popular community park. Families, couples and visitors to our area all enjoy the green open spaces and the beautiful amenities of the Riverwalk, including the botanical walk, tidal pools, beach volleyball court, performances at the amphitheater and on warm, sunny days and the Family Fun Zone with its splash fountain, just to name a few.

And don't forget about the incredible public art that's on display!

Of all the features on the Riverwalk, though, the skate park has to be the most dynamic.

The reality is, the skate park is already recognized as one of the best skate facilities in the region and it provides both a popular and scenic place to hang out on just about any day or night. It's a free, well-lit area that's open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It's also a place for our area's youth -- and young at heart -- to put down the video games, enhance their social skills, get some exercise and gather in a positive, well-meaning and creative way.

Kids of all ages -- sometimes even a few adults! -- don their helmets, throw down their boards and defy gravity. They slide down the bowl, up the other side and into the air, flexing and bending and spinning, only to land back on their boards, sliding back down the bowl to the other side to do it all again. They take turns, develop new tricks, cheer each other on and create a real sense of community.

It's an amazing thing that's happening there.

Found underneath the De Soto Bridge, the skate park is easily accessible for everyone and offers amazing, panoramic views of the river and the entire Riverwalk. I can only imagine the views the skateboarders get when they're flying up into the air. It really is a fantastic place!

So, the next time you're on the Riverwalk, have a seat under the bridge and take a few minutes to watch the high flying stunts being performed at the skate park. Who knows, you may just be watching the next X Gamer, or even the next Tony Hawk!

For information on the Riverwalk, visit www.realizebradenton.com. For additional information on the destination, visit www.BradentonGulfIslands.com. We also invite you to follow us on Facebook at "Visit Bradenton Gulf Islands" and Twitterendattr val="ctrack"/>

Elliott Falcione, executive director of the Bradenton Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, can be reached at Elliott.Falcione@BACVB.com or 941-729-9177 ext. 222.

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