Every nine years or so, as skateboard business wonks will tell you, the sport experiences a massive explosion in popularity. With each new crest, a handful of Johnny-come-lately entrepreneurs who care little about the sport (but have enough money), open up glitzy new shops in an attempt to cash in. Few of these owners have the cojones (ovaries in this case) or the passion to ride through the industry's rough 'n' tumble wipeouts, and that's why Berkeley's own 510 Skateboarding stands out like a champ among chumps. The store has a mission statement that reads: "We are owned and operated by skateboarders, and both our clothing/shoe store and our board shop are dedicated entirely to skateboarding." In other words, 510 won't pander to the Super Wild Extreme Sport du Jour crowd; no "mountain boards" here, dweeb. Instead, it focuses strictly on skateboarding, offering the best products and services on this side of the bay. A local treasure, open every day.
Readers' Pick for Best Skate Shop: 510 Skateboarding