All posts tagged: Bill Yates

The Sweetheart Roller Skating Rink, Tampa, Florida, 1972-73

“I believe a lot of photography is luck,” says Bill Yates. “But that depends on you putting yourself in a place where something is happening.” That’s just what he did back in September 1972, when he spotted the Sweetheart Roller Skating Rink. Driving around the rural Six Mile Creek in Hillsborough County, Tampa, in Florida, with a brand-new medium format camera, he saw the 1930s, wooden building out of the corner of his eye and, turning back for a better look, happened to meet the owner. “I never have a problem starting up a conversation so we started talking,” says Yates. “He took a liking to me and invited me to look inside. As soon as I walked in I said ‘Oh boy! This could be neat’. “I squeezed off a few frames of the interior and asked if I could come back, and he said ‘Sure, the place is going to be jumping’. When I returned, I could barely get in the car park.” What he’d stumbled on was the Studio 54 of its community, …


BJP Staff