Fun fact: I had a short-lived skateboarding career when I was in middle school, so I guess you could say I "get it". It was 2002, Avril Lavigne's "Sk8r Boi" was out around that time, it was a thing. I like to think I understood the culture and how awesome it was to find cool new places to skate. I mean, I didn't get much further than being able to ollie (literally getting the board off the ground) and occasionally landing a kickflip.
Okay, I lied...I never landed a kickflip.
Anyway, skaters Sean Colello (the filmer) and Rob Miceli (the skater) have MUCH more experience than me, and they recently took to an abandoned psychiatric hospital in New York to film some sick tricks for Jenkem Magazine, because... why not? They called it The Search For Building 40, and while the hospital is never mentioned by name, it's believed to be Pilgrim Psychiatric Center in Brentwood, NY. It's also rumored to be completely and totally haunted. This looks and feels like a map out of one of the Tony Hawk Pro Skater video games. Remember those?
Sean describes the abandoned psychiatric hospital in detail:
The campus is a pretty huge area made up of about 10 abandoned buildings and 4 buildings that are still functioning. Psych patients roam around the complex and so do cops. Most of the abandoned buildings are pretty boarded up so you can't get in, but the thing that's so sick is all the buildings are connected with underground tunnels, so if you can find a way into one, you can access them all. The nurses used these tunnels to deliver food and supplies to the patients all over the center. It's surprisingly untouched. You will still find office supplies, files, photos, machinery, and other artifacts.
The entire skating culture is all about trying new things, so why not skate where probably nobody has ever skated before. And where ghosts might live - BONUS! I combed through the video to find some of the moments that stood out to me.
Miceli clears a gap of collapsed flooring
This is pretty cool. A sizable gap and it just shows how old and decrepit the structure of these buildings has gotten.
He grinds on a super old table
It looks like the floor slopes a little bit, too. This is a a skater's paradise!
These tunnels connecting the buildings are creeeepy
Getting from building to building through these tunnels is cool, but man... I don't know if I would go down there. Seems super dark. And for some reason, I'm pretty sure it doesn't smell very good, either.
Tricks on an abandoned bowling alley
I'm not at all sure why there was a bowling alley in this hospital in the first place, but I do know that these dudes found it and proceeded to skate all up on it.
Rob even ollies over a dusty old rolling bowling ball!
They walk through a flooded room for the sake of more awesome skating footage
Yeah, totally worth it. This is awesome.
They get THIS dope shot
Rob clears the gap of this broken sun-roof window with room to spare.
And then this...
Wow, the epic jump over the wheelchair, with the board going underneath and his body going over the top is a great way to round out this video.
I was trying to figure out what it was about this video that captured my attention to easily. I guess I love the juxtaposition of such a modern sport with something so old and run down. It really felt like a video game and the shots they got were pretty spectacular. All we need is to add some zombies and this could be the next great mash-up videogame genre. Great job all around.