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Walking into the concourse, it’s almost impossible to miss all of the longboards lined up outside. Is longboarding a part of campus culture, an individual hobby or a passing fad?
“I think longboarding is a huge part of Principia culture because so many of us at this college have very chill mindsets, and longboarding is so applicable to all students,” freshman Jason McEntire said. “Not only for travel from building to building, but really, it’s a way of life, it’s a stress reliever, a way to let your mind wander. In that time, they aren’t thinking about school or worrying about anything.”
Longboarding is something McEntire is very passionate about, and many others who enjoy the sport will tell you the same thing or something similar as to why they feel it is catching on so rapidly.
Some individuals who do not longboard also agree that longboarding is a part of campus culture. Freshman Raine Wu, who does not longboard, said that “Of course I think it’s a part of campus culture. Everybody does it, it’s a fun and easy way to get around campus, and it makes you look cool.”
Why do many people seem to be becoming more interested? What is the attraction to the sport? Why is longboarding starting to surpass biking and skateboarding in recent years?
“It’s an easy concept to understand, and it’s a little more relaxed. You just ride,” junior Vernon West said. “It’s not fancy footwork, you don’t really do tricks. The focus is to ride, and to carve, and to get speed.”
Though most people agree that it is a fun activity, or at least that it looks like a fun activity, not everyone believes that it is necessarily a part of campus culture. West said, “I don’t necessarily think it’s a culture, but I think it’s a cool foundation for people to hang out.” Similarly, freshman Jess Coughtry said, “It’s just fun. Maybe it’s becoming something that’s a part of campus culture, but I personally just think it’s fun.”
So is it a certain group of students, or is it a wide variety of people that are starting to take up longboarding as either a sport or form of transport? Coughtry responded, “It definitely has become a kind of status symbol, it’s kind of a hipster thing almost.”
It’s quite possible that longboarding has become part of Principia culture, but most can agree that it is too soon to say for sure. The sport that is evolving and growing in popularity, especially at Principia it seems, may or may not someday be a staple of campus culture. Only time will tell as we continue to observe whether it is simply a hobby, or something more than that.