DES MOINES, Iowa — America’s most significant skateboarding event of the year has taken over Des Moines, which has helped interest in the sport take off in the city like Bob Burnquist from a vert ramp.
The Dew Tour coincided with the opening of the Lauridsen Skatepark, the largest skatepark in the United States. Once the pros leave the park, spectators like Drew Kaput of Grinnell say they want to try out the course for themselves.
“Sometimes I’m busy on the weekends, but if not, if I’ve got nothing else going on, I definitely want to come back up here as much as I can,” Kaput said.
The tournament motivated Kaput to pick up a board for the first time in a long time.
“I originally started skateboarding 15 years ago, when I was just a teenager,” Kaput said. “It’s been a while, about a decade at least.”
Kaput and his friends traveled from the Dew Tour to the nearby Subsect Skate Shop in order to pursue their passion again.
“I got one of the last helmets, I’m trying to protect this noggin,” Kaput said. “[Pro skater] Mike Vallely was here earlier and I got my board signed. My friends got some new decks and new boards.”
Subsect owner Kristy Jones said business has boomed since the Dew Tour came to town, especially among new skaters and those such as Kaput who are resuming the sport.
“I didn’t know we had so many skateboarders in Des Moines and all around Iowa, for that matter,” Jones said.
Jones expects the shop will experience a sustained increase in business because the skatepark is complete after more than a decade of planning.
“It means so much to the skateboarding community to not have to travel any further for a really nice skate park,” Jones said. We have the best park in the U.S. now.”