Felipe Gustavo returns to Tampa Bay on Saturday when ‘Skate The Bay’ brings top skaters to kick, push alongside locals

click to enlarge Felipe Gustavo returns to Tampa Bay on Saturday when ‘Skate The Bay’ brings top skaters to kick, push alongside locals - Red Bull
Red Bull
Felipe Gustavo returns to Tampa Bay on Saturday when ‘Skate The Bay’ brings top skaters to kick, push alongside locals

Idolators of Lebron James, Tom Brady, or Steven Stamkos don’t really get chances to be on the field of play, participating alongside their heroes. That’s where big-time professional sports organizations like the NBA, NFL, and NHL fall short of being truly accessible to their fans, and while Red Bull’s Skate The Bay isn’t a trip to Bob Burnquist’s Dreamland or even Tony Hawk’s backyard bowl, the access it gives local skateboarders is rare in the world of pro sports.

Set for Saturday, Skate The Bay taps a few of the globe’s premier skaters — Red Bull team riders Joey Brezinski, Alex Midler, Felipe Gustavo, and Alex Sorgente — to visit three Bay area skateparks where they’ll kick, push, ollie (and in Brezinski’s case, manny all over the place) alongside locals.

It kicks off at 10:30 a.m. at Lake Vista Skatepark (14016 2nd Ave., St. Pete) and heads south to the sexy Riverwalk Skatepark (101 Waterfront Dr., Bradenton) at 1 p.m. before the last session at the Skatepark Of Tampa (4215 E. Columbus Dr., Tampa) at 4 p.m. SPoT is hosting its 2nd Annual Matix Halloween Jam — which will feature Zack Wallin and Turkey Stopnik from the clothing company’s skate team as well as BBQ, beer and a costume contest — at the same time, making it a win-win for local riders.

“Super hyped to have them join the Matix Jam and double the impact of an already awesome event,” SPoT founder Brian Schaefer told CL, “Red Bull is an awesome sponsor of ours, so it’s great to have them on board.”

Brezinski, a 33-year-old, burrito-loving Los Angelino, who also happens to be the world’s definitive expert on one of skateboarding’s oldest tricks, the manual, says he’ll be on the lookout for some grub while he’s in the area. “I will definitely be Yelping a local burrito spot,” he told us in a brief chat where he also asked to go to Disney World.

The highlight of the roster, however, is definitely the return Gustavo, 24, who took first place in the 2007 edition of SPoT's storied Tampa Am competition. In case you forgot, Gustavo arrived at the comp as an unknown from Brazil after his father sold the family car so that he could afford a plane ticket. His emotional win (watch his run below) is one of the tournament's coolest success stories, as Gustavo now enjoys a pro career that a lot kids only dream of. 

The forecast for Saturday says mostly sunny with highs in the 80s, so you won’t find better conditions to get out and do something. More information on Red Bull’s Skate The Bay is available on Facebook, and you can catch details on SPoT’s Matix Halloween Jam here.

About The Author

Ray Roa

Read his 2016 intro letter and disclosures from 2022 and 2021. Ray Roa started freelancing for Creative Loafing Tampa in January 2011 and was hired as music editor in August 2016. He became Editor-In-Chief in August 2019. Past work can be seen at Suburban Apologist, Tampa Bay Times, Consequence of Sound and The...
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