February 9, 2023

Daisies and Pancakes: Brandi Myasia makes roller skate culture her business

Spend more than two minutes chatting with Brandi Myasia, owner of Daisies and Pancakes, a custom skate shop, and “the what” is clear: It’s all about skating, community, and fashion.

So, the first thing Discovery Green had to ask was: Why? Why “Daisies and Pancakes?”

The answer is simple: As a psychology student at Texas Southern University, Myasia was an early-riser flower child who loved breakfast. All that sunshine and positive energy earned her the nickname and it stuck.  

Myasia and her team of instructors will be at The Rink: Rolling at Discovery Green‘s opening night celebration Friday, Feb 10 from 6 – 10 pm. They’re offering a free beginners’ lesson at 6:30 pm and performances throughout the evening.

Open every day from Feb 10 through March 17, The Rink offers visitors an opportunity to try the sport outdoors under the glittering downtown skyline. Tickets are $12 and include skate rentals. Proceeds help support Discovery Green and the park’s hundreds of free activities a year. Purchase your tickets now!

After earning a master’s in education psychology at University of Houston, Myasia had a full career helping educators develop as leaders. A health scare and open-heart surgery forced her into early retirement. As she healed and grew her strength, she looked for a business she could be passionate about. The answer was fashion and roller skating. She started Daisies and Pancakes in 2019. It was nostalgia on wheels.

Roller rinks, music and fashion have long been an African American tradition. Since the civil rights movement, through the disco era in the 70s and the rise of hip-hop in the 80s and 90s, Black roller skaters have nurtured a culture, an art form, and a lifestyle inside rinks across the country. Including in Houston, where the city’s rap legends can trace their roots to roller skating rinks like Super Skate and Rainbow Roller Rink. In recent years, the sheer athleticism, dance and beauty of the sport is gaining in popularity thanks to the passion of these innovators.

Myasia credits the pandemic for bringing Houston’s thriving skate culture out of the rink and out onto the streets and into social media. With more eyeballs on the sport, more people grew interested in learning how, so she also opened The Lab which teaches beginner, intermediate and advanced skating at TSU. As a natural-born leader and educator, the classes are her way of using her skills to nurture other talented skaters into teachers as well.

At her beginners’ classes the first thing her team teaches is how to fall safely. Falls will happen. That’s just the first step in the learning process.

“It’s a metaphor for the community,” she says. “If you fall, somebody will come help you. They’ll ask if you’re all right then pull you up again… Once they know you’re ok they’ll laugh.”

After that lesson subsequent lessons build on each other until you’re dancing on wheels. Like this:

For five weeks only The Rink: Rolling at Discovery Green is giving you the opportunity to try out the sport in downtown’s only outdoor roller rink. Tickets are $12 plus tax and that includes skate rental. A portion of the proceeds goes to support Discovery Green Conservancy and the free cultural programming it offers year-round. Sign up for the newsletter for more info.

Brandi Myasia owner of Daisies and Pancakes