NORTHRIDGE, CA -- If you know skating, you know Skateland; so do a lot of famous people. Celebrities like Tom Cruise, Magic Johnson and Jay-Z have hosted parties at this legendary Northridge, CA roller rink. Movies and TV shows, including a segment of Jimmy Kimmel Live, have been filmed there. Now gliding into its second half century (52 years old to be exact!), Skateland still ranks as “one of the highest attended roller skating rinks in the country,” according to its general manager Steve Earley.
How has Skateland managed to stay young after serving three generations of skaters? “One of our core values is to update ourselves often with new technology so that we remain relevant to our main customer group of teens and 'tweens,” said Earley, who re-located to California from Boston 10 years ago specifically to work at the rink because “they were so advanced.” With seven video screens surrounding its 12,000 sq. ft hardwood skating floor and a state-of-the-art lighting and sound system, it's obvious that Skateland is committed to cutting-edge technology. Said Richard Rutherford of Rutherford Design (Northridge, CA), who has been designing and installing lighting at Skateland for 25 years: “They were into special effects lighting very early, and they're constantly evolving. I've seen them go through maybe a half dozen major evolutions.”
The most recent renovation involved the installation of LED fixtures from American DJ, along with some moving lights from ADJ's sister company, Elation Professional. Nine American DJ Revo III and Revo 4 LED moonflower effects were added, as were four ADJ Starball LED DMX white mirrorball-like effects. Two Elation 250-watt moving heads, the Design Spot 250 and Power Spot 250, and Elation's Vision Scan 250 moving mirror and Opti RGB color-changing LED par can were also installed on the sides of the center of the rink, where they provide “great position for coverage of the entire floor and much of the wall/ceiling areas,” said Rutherford. “We put in the Elation units to replace some other moving lights they had in there that didn't stand up to the wear and tear very well,” Rutherford added.
When it comes to withstanding the rigors that lights are put through at a roller rink venue, where they are constantly in use, American DJ's Revos have proven more than up to the task, said Earley. With no moving parts and a 100,000-hour LED lamp life, they are virtually maintenance-free. Their cool operating temperature allows them to run all day and night without shutting down for duty cycles, and their low power draw helps control electricity costs. Featuring red, green, blue and white LEDs, the Revos produce unique patterns that project across floors, walls and ceilings, and look great with or without fog. “They give a lot of bang for the buck,” said Earley, reporting that he was so pleased with the Revos that, after installing four of them initially, he went back and purchased five additional units.
Earley said he also plans to add more Starball LED DMX fixtures in the future. Powered by a high-output 3-watt LED source, the Starball LED DMX produces 34 bright white rotating beams that appear similar to a mirrorball effect, yet provide users with the advantages of LED technology. “Being a roller rink, our staple has always been the disco ball, so we really like those Starball LEDs,” commented Earley.
The long life, energy efficiency, affordability and wide coverage of American DJ LED fixtures “has really brought down the cost” of lighting, Earley added. “You can light an entire facility like ours today for maybe one-fifth the price that it would have cost you 20 years ago.”
Skateland is programming and controlling its light show with a Show Designer 1 DMX console and DR-512 DMX recorder. “Richard (Rutherford) and I will program the shows on the Show Designer – we'll maybe do four shows and then re-program them every quarter or so,” said Earley. “After they're programmed, we'll record them on the DR-512 recorder, and then all it takes is pressing one button to start the show. This makes it very easy for our teen employees to run the lights.”
See Skateland's awesome lights in action! Click link below.
For more information, contact American DJ at 800-322-6337 or visit the website at
Contact Elation Professional toll-free at 866-245-6726 or visit www.elationlighting.com
Rutherford Design can be reached at 818-775-0046 or visit www.rutherforddesign.com