Skating can be intimidating. These nymphs want to change that (includes video story)

Skateboarder Arays Domech, 23, craved a judgment-free skate community that was more welcoming to girls and queers. When she broke her wrist and couldn’t skate in 2021, Domech started on her plan.

She gathered a team of her friends who wanted to promote a friendlier atmosphere at skate parks and they founded Skate Nymphs. Their intention was to create a safe space in skate parks for girls and LGBTQ+ skaters of any level. 

“It was really toxic,” Domech said of male-dominated skate parks. “A lot of my friends did not feel comfortable.” 

Since its start, the nymphs have hosted 18 events to combat the uncomfortableness. They created an encouraging network for marginalized skaters.

“Generally there are always a bunch of guys skating and it is a little intimidating, so having a bunch of girls skating really cancels out that fear,” said skater Lora Kral.

At any Skate Nymphs meet-up, there is a support system in which members of the organization cheer each other on and help one another improve their skating techniques.

On Sept. 16, they hosted a “Beach and Skate Potluck” at Haulover Skate Park with a turnout of around 45 skaters.

They gathered on the side of the colorful skate pump track with food, drinks, and laughs. 

Zulay Irvin painting a skater besides the skating platform before the rainfall. Photo by Sophia Bolivar/ Caplin News.

Although it began to rain two hours after it began, the nymphs waited out the storm and continued skating once the weather cleared up.

Committee team member Kemba Brown-Clarke said that when they first heard about Skate Nymphs, they could not imagine there could ever be a skate community so welcoming. 

As the organization began to evolve, Domech wanted to create a formal team and that is when Brown-Clarke volunteered.

“Every time we throw an event we’re like, “this is our best event yet,’ and the next time comes and it’s like, “no, this is our best event yet,’” Brown-Clarke said.

The committee consists of seven Nymphs: Arays Domech, Julia Gaglio, Nishita Aswani, Kemba Brown-Clarke, Cristina Meléndez, Aarin Irvin and Katelyn Paff.

Their next event is on Oct.14, and the team is hosting their first skate market for their annual Halloween event. It will be at Lot 11 Skate Park. They plan to have women and queer vendors alongside their regular skate activities.

Sophia Bolivar is a senior at FIU majoring in digital journalism and focusing her studies on criminal justice. Sharing a love for both writing and photography has led her to pursue a career in journalism.