Arvada skaters of all varieties now have a new spot for all their gear, maintenance and training needs. Denver Skates Shop in Olde Town opened its doors for a soft opening on March 6 and will host a grand opening on April 1.
The shop, as the name suggests, caters to all conduits of skating; quads, inlines and skateboards. Owner Afton Hill said the shop will be a retail store, maintenance shop and the site of lessons for skating and roller dancing. The shop will also offer skatepark lessons.
Hill said her goal for the shop is to become a one-stop shop for all skating needs — including getting the fundamentals down in order to safely cruise around.
“It’s somewhere you can come, try good skates on, and get a free 30-minute lesson with your first pair of skates,” Hill said. “It’s important to build your foundation, your confidence — skating for the first time can be like Bambi on ice. I want to make sure (clients) are safe.”
The classes offered at Denver Skates Shop will span the spectrum of skill levels, starting at basic fundamentals — how to roll, stop, and skate backward — and continuing to roller dance and learning park basics, such as how to drop in, hand plants and grinding on rails.
Maintenance services offered will include bearing cleaning, wheel rotation, and mounting for custom builds. The shop will also assemble custom skateboards for interested customers.
Hill said she started the shop after working in the industry for years — she’s been involved in the Denver roller derby scene since 2017, and previously worked at Death and Glory Skate Shop — a Denver mainstay that closed its doors at the beginning of the year
After a somewhat tumultuous ending to her tenure there — an old general manager of the store purchased the Death and Glory name and opened another location, which isn’t affiliated to the original store —Hill sought out a clean slate.
“After (the old GM) took over that location, moving from there to here seemed more manageable,” Hill said. “It gives us a fresh start to show the community who we really are and who we’re targeting towards.”
Hill hopes the shop will become a safe haven for families, young people, beginners and experts alike.
Lessons at the shop will be offered frequently, with fundamental classes held between 6:15 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. Monday through Thursday; dance (which is geared towards beginners) will be from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday; and dance two (for experienced skaters) offered between 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday.
Memberships are available for folks who would likely attend multiple classes. Park lessons will be held at Cushing Skate Park in Englewood.
The shop will be open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. for retail sales. Hill says she has a core team of four employees that she would like to grow as the shop evolves and hosts more lessons.
Hill explained that Arvada was offered a great location to open the type of shop that she wanted to.
“Arvada’s always been family oriented; I wanted the shop to be inclusive and shared together,” Hill said. “Arvada really fits that boot of being family oriented but still having an edge to it.”
The shop is located at 5777 Olde Wadsworth Blvd. Hill said the shop will post updates on social media @thedenverskateshop.