Skaters and scooter riders are expected to descend on Wheeler Place in Newcastle’s CBD over the next three days for Revitalising Newcastle’s ‘Skate and Scoot’ festival.
In October, 2017, more than 1000 people crammed into the public space to use the temporary half-pipes, jumps and ramps in what was a successful test event for the concept and location.
This time round, Skate and Scoot has developed into an extended format, including a new gala competition, free clinics, and market stalls.
Revitalising Newcastle Program Director Michael Cassel said the festival was about activating the CBD and Hunter Street during light rail construction.
“Revitalising Newcastle first tested the idea of making Wheeler Place a free skate park during last October’s school holidays and we were blown away by the thousands of skaters and their families who turned up,” Mr Cassel said.
“With overwhelmingly positive feedback from local businesses, including many telling us they’d love to be involved in future events, Revitalising Newcastle is bringing Skate and Scoot back bigger and better over the next three days.
“Skate and Scoot is about providing families a free school holiday activity, while at the same time delivering on Revitalising Newcastle’s commitment to bring people back to our city centre, which is open for business throughout light rail construction.”
Thursday will be the day to check out the best riders in action. Firstly, with a skateboard groms S.K.A.T.E final from 2pm-3pm – which will run parallel to a half-pipe preliminary competition. Free lessons will then be on offer from 3pm-5pm for skater and scooter riders, followed by the scooter park competition final (5pm-6pm), adults S.K.A.T.E final (6pm-7pm), half-pipe scooter competition final (7pm-8pm), and finally a half-pipe skateboard competition final (8pm-9pm).
A DJ will be spinning tunes on Wednesday and Friday, and there will be pop-up shops from East End Skate & Surf and Grundy’s Skate Store across three days.
Overall program times are as follows:
Wednesday 17th: 9am to 5pm, scooters welcome.
Thursday 18th: 9am to 9pm, skateboards welcome.
Friday 19th: 9am to 5pm, scooters and skateboards welcome.
Supercars champion Jamie Whincup returned to the Hunter this week for the first time since his season-claiming victory at the Newcastle 500 seven weeks ago.
The champ said it was “quite weird” to return so soon, but he was happy to be back in the area.
On deck to officially open the new Bunnings Warehouse in Heatherbrae, Whinchup had nothing but praise for the Hunter.
“To come back to the place where so much joy went down is a good feeling,” Whincup said.
“I drove in [Monday] night and of course did a lap of the track. It was the first thing I did. So many memories came back of the final race.”
He spoke to the Heatherbrae team gathered in the warehouse at the official opening about his bumpy trip from Brisbane on Monday, winning the Newcastle 500 Supercars race in November and being a do-it-yourself handyman when it came to repairs around the house.
The Red Bull driver was forced to fly form Brisbane to Sydney with Newcastle Airport being closed. On the way, he got caught up on the M1 following the truck explosion on Monday. But eventually, the champ returned to the scene of his big victory.
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