Roller skating’s impact on the DC area, as told by a roller skate historian

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Matt About Town: Roller skating’s impact on the DC area, as told by a roller skate historian

Roller skating: for some, it’s fun recreation.

But for the D.C.-area’s African American community, it’s an activity that has helped shape culture for decades.

In this edition of “Matt About Town,” WTOP’s Matt Kaufax went out to Lanham Skate Center to lace up, and talk about the sport’s impact on the D.C. region. His featured guest: none other than D.C.’s very own roller skate historian: Tasha Klusmann.

Klusmann is the founder of the National African American Roller Skating Archives, established in 2004 at Howard University’s Moorland-Spingarn Research Center. She said her mission is to document all things roller skating. She has traveled around the country for the last 20 years. She is even a lifelong skater herself, and was cast, along with her entire family, as an extra in the 2005 film “Roll Bounce!”

She shared some of her life’s work with Kaufax, who found that despite being rusty on four wheels, it’s easy to put your best skate forward when you’re having fun!

Learn about roller skating’s impact on the D.C. area through the years.

“Matt About Town” airs every Tuesday and Thursday on 103.5 FM starting at 7:45 a.m.

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Matt Kaufax

If there's an off-the-beaten-path type of attraction, person, or phenomenon in the DC area that you think more people should know about, Matt is your guy. As the features reporter for WTOP, he's always on the hunt for stories that provide a unique local flavor—a slice of life if you will.

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