RollerLand Google Tour. Courtesy of ©2015 Google and © Kimball Nielson Photography.
Two words come to mind when I think of RollerLand Skate Center: ‘90s nostalgia. The disco ball, the smells, the arcade, the music and even the space carpet transport you right back to your early childhood birthday parties. They even have old Disney Channel shows playing on their TVs. I can’t quite describe how thrilling it was to feel like I entered back into a memory that I long forgot about.
There are many fun activities and unique entertainment opportunities available to us in Fort Collins, and many, like RollerLand, aren’t especially well known in the college-sphere. It is tucked away off of Mulberry St. and has a relatively spacious roller rink that’s perfect for hours of mindless but lively skating. It was established in 1980 and seems to be doing quite well.
On Wednesday nights from 8 p.m. – 10 p.m. at RollerLand, it’s adult skate night (ages 18 and up), so it’s not too crowded or full of small children. The price is $5 and $2 for the skate rental, which is reasonable. ‘80s tunes play courtesy of a DJ in a darkened room with flashing colored lights.
The environment is accepting for many reasons, but mostly because it is inclusive. Among the people there, I noted two older women who excelled at skating, while incorporating fancy footwork dance to Kendrick Lamar under the disco ball, older men zooming around the rink and people of every skill level enjoying themselves. I didn’t feel like I needed to be ashamed by skill level or age.
I hadn’t skated since I was 5 years old, but it was easy to pick up. They offer traditional 4-wheel skates and rollerblades, which I found are far easier to skate in. If you’ve never skated before, don’t worry; there is a fenced off area of the rink for beginners that my friends and I lovingly dubbed “the baby pen.”
I found that two hours went by quickly. This establishment seemed hidden away, known by a select few and its regulars. If you’re tired of movies and bar-hopping for your evening entertainment, I’d recommend to try skating and basking in the sentimentality that RollerLand offers.
I love RollerLand for many reasons, but mainly because they have kept it in its wistful condition. However, I do wish the hours for adult skate night were extended. I also realize that if I’m to return every Wednesday, I should probably purchase some rollerblades of my own. They’ll end up paying for themselves eventually.
Collegian A&E Reporter Clarissa Davies can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @DaviesClarissa.