Venture pays off as skate business grows

Accountant turned skate shop owner Al Taylor is ready to slide on in to his new, expanded premises.

After 18 months operating in South St, Al’s Skate Co is moving to its new, much bigger skate shop at 2/155 Melbourne Rd.

Al is excited to have a bigger space to work to offer a wide range of services such as skateboard and scooter lessons, BMX sessions, ladies night, birthday party options as well as lessons aimed at children and adults.

“I spent 20 years as an accountant but I’ve always been a skateboarder,” he said.

“I needed a change. It was a lot to do with my mental health, bit of work life balance.

“I’ve always loved skating and thought I would follow my passion and try and make a job out of my passion.

“When we started we didn’t know how it was going to work. We worked with school groups, had our skateboard lessons and built our name in the community.”

Al said the growing interest in lessons and people wanting to skate, meant the old place got a little too crowded.

““What we aim to offer here is a safe and controlled environment for people to learn how to skateboard. We also do scooter lessons,” he said.

“This place will give us a bigger platform to have more people come through and get a wider reach throughout the community.

 “The advantage here is that we are protected from the weather, we are full air-conditioned … and we have got a great bunch of coaches here to help those brand new to skateboarding.”

Al said when they looked to expand, he knew he wanted to remain in Wodonga.

“It was a no-brainer for us to keep the business in Wodonga,” he said,

“I think Wodonga is a very young, forward thinking town. It’s one of the more youth-focused towns and right from when we started exploring options, the council got in touch and were keen for us to start our business here.

“We’ve worked really closely with a number of youth services such as Wodonga Council and Junction Services down the road.”

Al’s Skate Co will be open six days a week from Wednesday to Sunday.