Board Awakens skatepark and outfitter to open in Andover
A pandemic loss for one business means the birth of another in Andover.
Jason McKenney has worked in health care and social services for the past two decades, and the last company he worked for closed because he couldn’t see customers in person during the pandemic.
When McKenney received severance pay, he said he realized it was his opportunity to open his own business.
On Saturday, McKenney will open the Board Awakens Skatepark and Outfitter at 301 W. Central in Andover.
McKenney said a skateboard was his primary form of transportation between the ages of 10 and 16, but he quit skating as an adult, that is, until he was 40 three years ago.
McKenney said he took his kids out on bikes and scooters and was “bored to tears” while they were playing, so he decided to join in the fun.
“What if I bought a skateboard?” I could at least get by with the kids.
He said he found out that being in his 40s might not be the best time to try skateboarding again.
McKenney said he “just bit hard in the garage immediately and found himself laughing on the floor.”
Over the next three years, he said his skills haven’t exactly returned.
“I’m probably as good as your average 9 year old right now.”
McKenney said he also discovered that there weren’t a lot of skate park options for people in the Andover area, especially since the weather often precludes outdoor skating.
Its indoor park features a 16-foot-wide mini ramp and a street course for skateboarding, roller skating, and inline skating.
“I feel like I have something cool and unique to the region here.”
The building has 2,200 square feet for the skate park and an additional 1,000 square feet for the retail of skateboarding goods and equipment.
McKenney will be offering $ 50 memberships with unlimited skating and 10% off in-store purchases. Otherwise, it will cost $ 10 for two hours of skating.
Initially, the park will be open to members only, but non-members can start coming around October 14.
Andover Park is McKenney’s only project, but he said, “If popularity demands growth, that’s a problem I wouldn’t mind having.