GALLERY: Skateboarders sleigh moves in Christmas bowl

HIGH FLY: Kobe Higgins at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.   Picture JONATHAN CARROLL
HIGH FLY: Kobe Higgins at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday. Picture JONATHAN CARROLL
ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.  Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday. Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.  Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday. Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.  Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday. Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.  Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday. Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.  Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday. Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ON THE EDGE:  Hayden Swift  joined other skaters at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.

ON THE EDGE: Hayden Swift joined other skaters at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.

Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.  Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday. Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.  Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday. Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.  Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

ACTION: Riders show their skill at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday. Picture JONATHAN CARROLL

UNITY: Skaters at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.

UNITY: Skaters at the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party yesterday.

SANTA Claus came to town last night, but anyone wandering past Empire Park on Sunday could be forgiven for thinking Christmas had come early.

Dozens of Santa’s young helpers traded their sleighs for skateboards for the Bar Beach Bowl Riders Christmas party.

The beach was the place to be  with temperatures nudging 30 degrees in some parts of the Hunter.

But swimsuits were probably far more practical than the heavy red Santa suits.

The skate park at Empire Park, which has now been open for almost two years, was a controversial addition to the beachfront partly because of concerns it would attract antisocial behaviour.

The Christmas event was very much a social affair.