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Naptown Real Rollers host event to share Black skate culture and traditions

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Roller skaters from all over the country are headed to Indianapolis. The annual “Roll for Soul” event draws everyone from experienced skaters to newcomers lacing up for the first time.

Lowell Harris is the president of the Naptown Real Rollers. Harris and a long-time friend founded the skating club in 1999. Over the past decade, the organization has been known for its collective skating style and infusing skate-dance moves from cities like St.Louis, Louisville, Chicago, and Detroit.

Harris said the organization is excited to host the skating event and bring black skate culture to the forefront.

“One of the important things to remember about Black skate culture is that once upon a time, Black skaters weren’t allowed to skate in rinks based on their race. Instead, people were skating in the streets and the basement and could only skate one night a week sometimes,” Harris. Despite past challenges for Black roller-skaters, Naptown Real Rollers continue to make strides and carry traditions.”

Roll for Soul kicks off Friday, and the organization has a meet and greet for attendees at the AMP. The skate party will happen later in the evening at Franklin Skate Club, with doors open from 11 p.m. to 3 a.m. The Playas Ball is Saturday at Illusions Jazz Bar & Grill from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Afterward, they’ll close the evening again at Franklin Skate Club for a final skating party.