Boarding in Chico

Beau Pollock

Photo By Hilda Iorga

Walk down West Second Street between Main and Broadway, and you’ll find nestled between a salon and a wine shop is Chico’s newest skateboard shop, Board In Chico. On a hot and slow Monday, Beau Pollock, 25, manager of the store and avid skateboarder, snowboarder and surfer, sits behind the cash register listening to music. Originally from Nevada City and currently a Chico State photography student, Pollock took the time—15 minutes—to discuss the politics of Chico skateboarding.

Where do your boards come from?

We get boards from all over the place. We mainly use a couple of different distributors rather than go through each company individually… And we have the largest selection of long boards in Chico. [Those] are really popular right now because it’s a good way to get around and it’s fun. [Long boards] have a limited amount of tricks but you go a lot faster and it’s a lot easier.

Why this location?

Just because it was downtown and close to everything and the landlord was really open to the reconditioning of the building.

So is business good?

Yeah, business is good. The summer has slowed down a little bit because a lot of our clientele is Chico State students, otherwise we have a strong clientele—very loyal customers.

I see you have that ramp, what’s the deal?

The ramp is open skate if you’re over 18. If you’re a minor then you need to have a parents’ waiver signed. Other than that, it’s a fun thing.

Considering the laws prohibiting skateboarding on downtown sidewalks, do people have to walk their boards to the store?

I think people skate anyways only because they don’t get hassled too much by the police. But if they end up getting a ticket for it, then they’re probably going to walk their boards, which doesn’t seem right to me because it’s just a form of transportation just like anything else—like a bicycle or all those Razor scooters.

Well, why are there laws?

I think because skateboarding can be kind of loud and obnoxious and there usually tends to be more than one person so that takes up space on the sidewalk… I doubt [it’s for safety reasons] because riding a bike is just as dangerous as skateboarding.

The store is very clean, not like other skate shops…

Yeah, we keep it nice and clean. It’s a nice, relaxing environment. We have some chairs back there. We actually specialize in showcasing local artists…Right now we’re featuring Sacred Art—their tattoo artists’ art. We work with NFA Galleries, a local business by Chico State students…We [also] have a musical show—bands and DJs—once a month, generally… [Those interested] can check out our Web site, which is and also come by the store—we usually have flyers.