Tech Support’s “Big Daddy Ray” Stitt Skates Past 102K Followers on TikTok
Whether it’s skating or biking, Tech Support Technician and part-time Campus Safety Officer Ray Stitt has had a lifelong passion for wheels—a hobby he’s been combining with his social media know-how to gain fame on TikTok as @BgDaddyRay.
One might say that, put simply, on campus the 24-year staffer fights viruses, and off campus he tries to go viral. It is a natural, if corny, observation—but that type of humor is right up Stitt’s alley. One needs to look no further than a neon “We can’t date if you don’t skate” t-shirt in one recent video for proof.
Stitt was only 3 years old when he learned to roller skate, and later he competed in inline speed skating. As a teenager, he raced BMX bikes. He was ranked third in Pennsylvania and 11th nationally.
When he served in the Marine Corps, he “got away from skating” for a while, but then 15 years ago he quit smoking and his doctor told him to do something he liked to do as a child. “So then I got back into roller skating and speed skating, because that was something that I always wanted to do as a kid, and my parents couldn’t afford it when I was younger. It’s something that I always had a passion for.”
“Now I just skate and bike and have a good time with it,” said the official Schuylkill River Trail ambassador.
When he’s not traveling to rinks along the east coast, he can likely be found at either Whitehall Skateaway Roller Rink or Philly SkatePlex. He tries to make time for skating three or four times a week.
“What I love about skating is that whenever you walk into the rink, and you put your skates on, and you hit that floor, your troubles are gone. You’re in another world, like you just entered a whole new arena,” said Stitt. “It’s all about the fun and watching everybody else having fun out there with you.”
It was six years ago when he started creating videos on TikTok with his daughter, who is now 14. “I decided I was going to try to do a TikTok in the skating rink,” said Stitt. “The first video that I posted just went crazy. It was good songs. It was good people, good skaters that were all in a big pack. It just took off from there.”
Now he has 102,500 followers, and his most popular video has more than 836,000 views.
When he was a child, Stitt skated with his church group, and the soundtrack was strictly organ music. Now he prefers to skate to 80s music and “anything that has good beats per minute.” Out on the floor, he likes freestyle skating as well as shuffle skating, which he describes as watching a marching band, where everyone is doing the same moves in unison and “is in that same beat, and in that same groove, and feels that same energy.”
In addition to the community he’s found at the rink, he also appreciates the community he’s found online. He often collaborates with other TikTok creators, and promotes skaters, DJs, and rinks to help attract more people to skating.
“I just enjoy skating, and I hope that people who used to do it come on back, and people who haven’t tried it come on out,” said Stitt. “A gentleman who was 96 years old had his birthday party at the rink … Everybody was behind him videotaping him out on the skating floor at 96 years old. Hopefully I can be out there in 40 years doing that same thing.”