PORTLAND — They blew off all their obligations, took the day off from work or school, turned off their laptops, and left their video games at home.

It was a day to celebrate the sport of skateboarding and they did it in style at Portland’s new skateboard park on Thursday.

More than 100 skateboarders and their family and friends from across Maine came to the city’s skatepark on St. James Street, near Dougherty Field, to strut their stuff.

Bodies flew through the air, a few landed on their buttocks, while one rider skated in his bare feet.

“It’s about pushing each other to have fun,” said 15-year-old Elijah Akerley of Lewiston.

Riders clapped their boards on the pavement when someone pulled off a complicated trick and boarders apologized for inadvertently cutting another rider off.

“I like the free expression it gives you,” said 26-year-old Justin Melton of Kennebunk, moments after he landed on his rear end while riding up a ramp on the park’s bowl – a deep concrete depression shaped like a swimming pool. “When I go home at the end of the day, there is not a muscle I don’t feel.”

Thursday’s event, which was sponsored by Gould Academy in Bethel and the Portland Recreation Department, was part of the international “Go Skateboarding Day.”

Every year, on June 21, skateboarders from around the world gather to celebrate the sport’s official holiday.

Dave Bean, who coaches the varsity skateboard team at Gould Academy – it was established 14 years ago – chose Portland’s new skatepark for the event.

The city skatepark, which opened in November 2010, cost $325,000 and features a concrete bowl and adjacent street park with ledges, rails and steps providing the challenge.

“The idea is to get people interested in skateboarding,” said Bean, himself a skateboarder.

“I really like this park,” said Davis Ballou, 10, of Gardiner. Ballou, who moved to Maine from Alaska a few years ago, was one of the younger skateboarders.

Rodrigo Faria, who moved to Westbrook from Brazil in October, decided to go barefoot. It was his first try at barefoot skateboarding but he impressed the crowd with his smooth, effortless moves.

One of the most athletic skateboarders at the park was Chris Peterson of Auburn.

Peterson rode his board into the bowl and up its side before spinning in midair and landing outside the bowl.  His father, Eric Peterson, said his son has suffered broken arms and had to have stitches in his mouth after suffering falls.

Prizes for the event were furnished by Bump Skateboard of New Jersey. Live music was provided by the EarBleeds, a rock band based in Wells.