On a quiet street the headlights of cars appear as members of Board Dixie converge on a small parking lot in Washington.
Despite the low temperatures, nearly 30 people have arrived to ride longboards together. This is Board Dixie, a club that meets most Thursdays at 9 p.m. Each week a meet up location is announced via Instagram and Facebook. People hang out while cars continue to arrive long after the official meet-up time. Usually a few vehicles are driven to an end point so no one has to walk back at the end of a ride.
Lyndsey Daniels, a junior nursing major from Sandy, helped start the group with her friend Rosalee Hafen, a sophomore psychology major from St. George.
“My vision for Board Dixie was to make friends, learn something new, and to have a change of scene from school and work,” Daniels said.
Anyone is welcome to attend. Former DSU student Levi Hughes joined the group when he saw them in a Harmon’s parking lot. He feels like it gives people something to do on Thursday nights.
To be a member, actually riding a longboard is optional, and according to the group’s Facebook page, lessons are taught. Some attendees chose to ride scooters, and Daniels said some members even walk the route.
Because of its size, Board Dixie attracts attention. The group has been stopped by the police during rides before, but so far they have had positive interactions. Zach Stoddard, Dixie State University Police Academy alumni and local business owner, said skateboarding is definitely not a crime. Hafen agreed with Stoddard’s sentiment.
“We’re not doing anything wrong,” Hafen said. “[Police] just say be safe [and] wear reflectors.”
Thursday’s 2-mile ride through the streets ended in another small parking lot. Some boarders practiced sliding, forcing their wheels to break free and drift sideways along the asphalt. At one point, a game of sharks and minnows happened.
It was the first group ride for Ryan Jones, a junior business administration major from Enterprise, who felt an instant connection with the group.
“It’s pretty cool,” Jones said. “I had a great first experience … there were good vibes coming off [the group] because you have a good connection.”
Though currently a group not affiliated with DSU, Board Dixie is seeking club status and hopes to be officially recognized in the next several weeks.
“We’re anticipating to be more involved on campus with Homecoming Week, Club Rush and the parade,” Daniels said. “Also the funding would be very beneficial so we could do excursions as a club. Honestly the people that come deserve it, to be official and part of the real deal.”