Social media, known to bring people together made it possible to bring the skaters of Oman in touch. Oman Skate, a Facebook group for the local skaters was set up sometime between 2010 and 2011. With only four or five members, the group, month by month grew as a community.“
There were skaters in Oman but we didn’t know each other. Eventually, more and more people joined, liked the page and started sharing it and week by week, month by month the community grew bigger,” Hytham said. From a video game to a Facebook group and his very own skate park, Hytham Al Wahaibi, a young man with a big dream hosted Oman’s first Go Skateboarding Day in Oman.
As the temperature keeps rising and the long days only getting hotter, most people are retreating to indoor venues to stay out of the scorching heat of the sun other than the “rebellious” skaters.
With schools closed for their summer holidays and most kids hoping to work on their extracurriculars, Oman Skate and its owner Hytham took this opportunity to celebrate in Oman its first Go Skateboarding Day.
On the longest day of summer, 21 June, Go Skateboarding Day is celebrated across the globe. The holiday was conceived in 2004 by the International Association of Skateboard Companies (IASC) to help make skateboarding more accessible to the world through various events held in major cities around the world. In 2006, more than 350 events took place in 32 countries around the world, and, the following year, the IASC received Special Congressional Recognition from US Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez for its work in promoting the sport of skateboarding and encouraging young people to get outside and enjoy the sport.
To make it accessible to most, Oman Skate’s Go Skateboarding Day was hosted a day after the official holiday on a Friday making it easier for both older and younger skateboarders and enthusiasts to finally be able to celebrate this event together in the only skate park in Oman.
Despite the hot weather, large groups of people went in and out, skating, hanging out and enjoying as competitors and casual skaters practiced their Ollies, Aciddrop, runs and other tricks before the Go Skateboarding Day competitions.
With most schools shut for the summer, both Hytham and his partner James were both happy to see the turnout and a lot of the younger skaters go away during their long vacations. Other than the crowds that came to cheer on, at the event were nearly 15 competitors that had signed up for the day’s events.
Competitions included Game of SKATE, highest and longest Ollie and the top three best runs, with competitors ranging from the ages of eight to thirty!
From sundown at 6pm, the events of the day lasted through the evening and finally concluded after 10.30pm.
Hytham, surprised and excited about the turnout said, “We didn’t expect many people to turn out. With schools closed and the hot temperature, it was surprising to see how many people came out to support us and compete in our competitions! Skaters in Oman are used to celebrating the day with friends, in places hoping they won’t get stopped so with Oman Skate now a reality, this was the perfect opportunity!”
The event was completely funded and organized by skaters and sponsored by skater owned companies like Technique Skateboards and Impossible Supply Company and it wouldn’t have been possible without their continuous support and trust in Oman’s upcoming skating trend.
“The turnout was great even in this hot weather and it was amazing! We are sure to make more of these events happen, and expect more competitions coming up in the months to come later in the year once the weather cools down” said James Bringas, who helped support and organize this fantastic event. If you missed it, don’t fret! There’s more to come and be sure to follow Oman Skate on their Instagram and Facebook @OmanSkate and get your updates about upcoming events, sales and even check out the works of skaters visiting the park!