The Texas Blade Classic 4 at Alliance Skatepark in Grand Prairie Texas is coming up this Saturday on October 5th so we decided to pick the brain of it’s organizer, Brian Barnard, to find out more regarding the history of the contest and what we can expect from the upcoming Texas Blade Classic 4.
The first Texas Blade Classic was in 2016. I had just started my second tenure with Alliance Skatepark. I’d previously worked for the park in 2007 while I was in college at UT Arlington In 2009 I moved on to a role with the Dallas Stars. I came back to work with Alliance in the summer of 2016 right as the park was beginning a quarter million dollar renovation. After a few months back I received the green light to put on a contest and began planning what became the first Texas Blade Classic. The immediate goal was to channel the energy I felt from the Hoedown. The scene in Texas is so healthy and I really believed we had a lane to fill with hosting a contest at Alliance Skatepark.
The majority of the changes have been to the covered skatepark which we call “The Hangar”. It has an absolutely amazing full bowl mini ramp, foam pit, and separate sections with plaza style obstacles and transition areas. Considering it still has the majority of the original ramps, the outdoor ASA style course is close to what it originally was from the beginning. A few weeks ago on Instagram Jaren Grob posted a clip from one of his runs at a X-Trials event at the park. It was pretty cool to see how the park was almost twenty years ago and I think it got a few of the locals hyped to spend more time on the pro course when they come blade to Alliance.
The Hoedown changed my life. I will be forever grateful to have witnessed the few that I was able to. To me nothing will ever be what the Hoedown was. The atmosphere, the high level of blading, the overall vibe was very special. The Texas Blade Classic is about celebrating the Texas scene. I never intended on replacing or exceeding what the Hoedown was able to accomplish but I absolutely wanted to channel that energy and be able to provide something close. Above all it’s about blading, friends & family. The only pressure I feel is what comes along with running a smooth event.
Is there anyone you would like to thank for helping make the Texas Blade Classic possible?
Thank you to Mark Laue, Victor Nelson, Jason Reyna, Jon Julio, Nate Landerholm, Ryan Lakey, John Sullivan, Brian Moore, Kevin Little, Geoff Acers, the whole DFW Bladers squad and the Texas Blade scene for the continuous support.
Follow the Texas Blade Classic event pages at
For more information about Alliance Skate Park go to