Burnside skatepark gets custom beer

Burnside skatepark will team up with the local brewery to create a custom beer. Courtesy Burnside Brewing Company

Legendary Burnside skatepark celebrated its 21st anniversary on Halloween night and to commemorate the milestone, a nearby Portland, Ore., brewery is busy whipping up a special batch that could eventually find its way to thirsty beer-lovers across the country.

For the past few weeks, Burnside's shot-callers -- Mark "Red" Scott, Chuck Willis, and Sage Bolyard -- have been meeting with the founders of Burnside Brewing Company. The 15-tank operation and its pub are located a few blocks east of the skatepark, and its brewmaster, Jason McAdams, grew up skating Burnside.

"At this point, you can definitely say that we have a love connection with the brewery," says Bolyard, who started skating and building at the renegade spot when it wasn't much more than a DIY concrete bank up against an existing wall beneath the eastern hallow of Burnside Bridge. "But we haven't narrowed down the beer itself, and we don't have any graphics for the bottle yet."

"It's something we're all interested in doing," says Jay Gilbert, a partner at the brewery, which opened its doors just 10 month ago. "Now we're in the process of wracking our brains for a beer style and doing some test batches. We're thinking something more aggressive, with a higher alcohol content and a full-hop style. And we're hoping by spring to get label approval to sell 22-ounce bottles in and around Portland at first, with [wider distribution after that]."

Gilbert added that the brewery intends to funnel some of the earnings from the sale of the beer back into the park, which recently secured status as a 501(c) nonprofit.

"Being able to pair ourselves up with such a legendary space is pretty special, and we think it'd be cool to get some funds back to the park for concrete patching and other maintenance," Gilbert says. "We basically would like to help keep it up and running for another 21 years."