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April 2017

April 8: volunteer carpenters, co-ordinated by Tom Berry

Quite a bit of equipment was dismantled and scrapped, so that there's no rotting wood left now.

after 8 hours of work, it's all set up for another season

Tom says they'll come back one more day to finish what they want to do.


April 22: skateboarder carpentry continues

Meantime, there's a Star story about another DIY skateboard place about to be destroyed

DIY skateboard spot at Ft.York (Star photo)

April 29: building a new, more solid quarter pipe

The Dufferin Grove skateboarders did some crowd-funding for materials to build a better quarter-pipe. Their request went well and they were able to buy long-lasting materials.

solid 2x4's all the way up


April 2016

April 2016

April 2016

The skateboard park is all set up and busy. Thomas Berry and friends have done lots of repairs and rebuilds, along with a new piece donated by Converse. (Jason Kun is out of the loop now -- he's done his years of helping, and he and his wife have a new baby plus an oyster-shucking business at farmers' markets.)

Skateboarders like to make videos, and there are lots posted by people from Dufferin Grove -- a sample is here.


posted October & November, 2014

No access to the skate park on Thursday's from 12pm to 9pm - Farmers market on the rink

From the May 2014 Newsletter:

Skateboarding and BMX riding at the Dufferin Grove rink pad:

Toronto has 13 official skateboard sites and 2 BMX facilities citywide, with a few more under construction or planned. There are also some other courses – like the one at Dufferin Grove – built by users with varying degrees of City staff help. Actually, the culture of these sports often seems to lean toward DIY courses. For example, the Dufferin Grove staff have heard from BMXers that they prefer come to Dufferin Grove rink pad to ride their BMX bikes, using whatever ramps, boxes, ledges, and grind rails are there, and adding to them. They say that although they are aware of the BMX facility up the road next to the Galleria Mall, Dufferin Grove is more appealing to the older (25+) crowds.

Okay. But over $200,000 was spent to build the BMX course at Wallace. At Dufferin Grove the City supplies some building materials for the skateboard ramps and the jump boxes. It contributes some staff hours for labour and maintenance. But the materials the city is willing to pay for are cheap, and so the ramps need to be repaired a lot. There are only a few skilled carpenter-skateboarders/ BMXers who know how to do the repairs, but large numbers of skaters and riders (from younger teens to 25+) come out to enjoy themselves. This is not a viable formula over the long term: many users + not enough resources for maintenance = a clock that’s ticking on the Dufferin Grove skateboard course (with added BMX).

To make the most of the available DIY input and youth enthusiasm, active partnerships between users and the City will have to become part of the city’s approach to these sports. That means funding an equal half of the maintenance-labour costs, and funding better-quality materials that will last longer. This year there was not a single skateable structure left at Dufferin Grove from the end of last year. The skateboarders have been trying to get the attention of City Councillor Ana Bailao to tell her that better support of this de facto skateboard facility would be a good way to use our taxes. But so far not much luck....

From the September 2014 Newsletter:

Dufferin Grove skateboard improvements


The informal, very popular skateboard park on the Dufferin Grove rink pad got very lucky this summer. Skateboarder and builder Rob Poyner contacted long-time skateboard volunteer Jason Kun to ask if the park might like some high-quality skateboard equipment designed by Gord Hardie and built by Gord and Rob under the sponsorship of the Converse company. Would we! And an unexpected donation from the GH Wood Foundation contributed some maintenance funds as well. So the days of splintery, slightly iffy skateboard ramps at Dufferin Grove are over for the moment.

posted June 19-22, 2014

No access to the skate park - International Bike Polo Tourny is on. sorry for the inconvenience.

posted May 05, 2014

Staff get to work on the skate park finally!

posted April 19, 2014

No Skate Park yet in 2014

The snow has melted and the rink pads are ready for action - but there's no equipment and no skateboarders, BMX bikes, rollerladers around. There's been a reduction in the number of volunteers to help maintain the skate park and the City is not prepared to start repairing equipment till mid May. So for the time being - there's no skate park at the Dufferin rink.

Credit to David Ghent for sharing the photos

Skate Park by the end of 2013

Skate Park this year - 2014


posted Summer 2013

Four Wheels First!

posted April 22, 2014

Read this article on the subject

Duff Grove park coordinators asked me to post something about BMX bikes at the skatepad. Also not really sure how may BMXers are on this group. Because pegs are harder and the bikes heavier, it really puts some fast damage on masonite and plywood surfacing. Since we just resurfaced, the park is kindly asking BMXers to stay away from anything with masonite on it or was built for skateboard use (manual pad, small quarter, small grind box now...more to come) as it was intended for use by skateboarders. Duff grove is also a great place for beginning skaters and fast moving bikes really cut off a lot of the park fast. If there's no one there and just bikers, go ahead and rip it on the bigger bike stuff that was brought there, but from what i hear, the park coordinators will be asking users to follow a 'Four Wheels First' rule. there's always Wallace?

Jason K

posted July 01, 2013

Skateboard park in need of repair!

For five years now, Dufferin Grove has had a community-led skateboard installation on the south rink pad in the summertime. Some of the kids who were digging in the sand pit a few years ago have graduated to the skateboard pad – time passes!

This community-led pad is a sequel to a city-owned skateboard pad that was located at Dufferin Grove for two years during the time Scadding Rink (the skateboard pad’s home base) was being rebuilt. The DG skateboarders didn’t want to go back to Scadding when the equipment was moved back, so they built their own smaller-but-still-fun structures year by year at Dufferin Grove. Of course, the actual builders are the older guys, some of them carpenters in their day jobs, or just handy with tools, with the younger ones looking on and passing tools over. The standards are pretty high since the builders are also the skaters, and nobody wants to get hurt. (Soccer is still the leading sport for injuries – there are surprisingly few injuries in skateboarding.)

From Jason Kun, the moving force behind the skateboard pad: The Dufferin Grove Skateboard pad has been busier than ever this year and has been recognized with a decorative tile in the newly renovated Dufferin Subway Station. The City of Toronto has contributed to the park by providing tempered polyboard (masonite) as surfacing materials for the skateboard park grind boxes, manual pads and ramps. We would kindly ask people to not use the pads, boxes and ramps when wet as this wears down the surface material faster. The Dufferin Grove Skateboard Pad was originally created for use by skateboarders and we would also kindly ask BMX bikers to refrain from using the smaller skateboard equipment as the masonite cannot withstand this use.

There’s a surface material called Skatelite, which is specifically made for skateboarding installations (and works for BMX too). It costs $200 a sheet (from the Canadian Ramp Company in Burlington) and it has a life expectancy of 20 years outdoors. The masonite supplied by the City costs only $13 a sheet – but the new sheets are already cracking after one week of use. In the long run, buying cheap materials is a false economy, since it takes so much more fixing.

At this point the City is not covering any building or maintenance costs for this community-led project. Volunteer energy is running down. The flexibility of using the food donations (from Friday Night Supper and the cafes) – to buy good-quality supplies, and assigning staff to help fix things – is gone, now that the money all goes downtown. But maybe the park will be lucky and a skateboard friend will come forward to help buy a Skatelite panel or two. Meantime, for BMX riders the rule is: stay away if you have pegs, stay off the masonite, and when the skateboard pad is busy, go up to the bigger BMX park at Wallace-Emerson. The rule is: “four wheels first: 4W1.”

posted June 11, 2013

Skaters say they can help but they need the city to pitch in by buying the hardware

SkateBoard FundRaiser 2-8pm , April 28, 2012

BBq, Games and Prizes, local skateboarders are hoping to raise some many to keep the ramps at Dufferin in good condition and build some new ones.

Jason Kun


A City within a park, By Tom Berry, August 20, 2011







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