Quaint brick town houses line both sides of Bero Road in Lansdowne and for all intents and purposes the neighborhood appears no different than any other quiet suburban area.

But just past the last house of the left, a somewhat hidden driveway leads to one of the most famous parks on the East Coast — the Sandy Hills Skatepark.

"It's said to be one of the oldest [skateparks] on the East Coast, if not the United States," said Pay McDougall, planner for the Baltimore County Department of Recreation and Parks.

The park, which opened in 1978, features a massive concrete bowl, now decorated with colorful graffiti left by skaters past and present.

Most modern skate parks feature only metal ramps, which do not allow as much room for experimentation on the board, McDougall said.

"It's just an entirely different style," McDougall said of the concrete bowl. "You're more spread out, you're not within as constricted of an area.

"Sandy Hills is unique in Baltimore County in that it is the only site which offers both [concrete and metal]," he said.

The dual setup at the Lansdowne park has made it a mecca of sorts for skaters around the country and around the world.

Chuck Mitchell, who has worked at the skate park since August 2001, said he has seen "thousands" of skaters come through the park to ride the unique "snake run" through the concrete bowl.

"[From] as far as Russia, England, California," the 61-year-old Baltimore Highlands resident said. "It's pretty famous."

Mitchell said professional skateboarder Bucky Lasek once requested a private session in the park while he was traveling through for the Dew Tour, a nationwide action sports competition.

"This park is so different because it's so board friendly," Mitchell said. "It just has a natural flow to it.

"I don't know much about skating, but that's what they tell me," he said. "Here you can start from the back and everything flows into each other."

Brayden Coleman, 13, and his brother Zackery Coleman, 12, live right up the street from the park and are frequent visitors.

"It's pretty awesome," Brayden said of the park. "I like how high the ramps are and how smooth they are."

He said a friend of his showed him the park a few years back and now he skates there all the time.

"I usually go by myself and they just pop up random times," he said of his friends, who also skateboard.

"I've been doing it [skateboarding] since I was a little kid," he said. "It's very fun and exciting."

Mike Hull drove from Bethesda to experience the park's unique concrete bowl.

"I went online and looked for new spots I haven't been to yet," the 20-year-old said. "Something that's not like everywhere else.