I’ve known EG Fratantaro for close to 20 years. He was one of the founding folks at Sector 9. A while back he opened up Hand Plant in Laguna Beach. This kicks off a new feature here on our website.


What makes Laguna Beach so special in your eyes?

Laguna has strong roots in surfing and skateboarding along with its deep ties in art. Laguna Beach has always had a different feeling from the rest of Orange County. Its beautiful hills, incredible beaches and community vibe make it one of the best places to live on earth. We have nice hills to skate but no park yet, nut we are going too change that. 

What were some of the reasons for you starting up a shop? Handplant was founded out of a need to have a truly hardcore skate shop here in Laguna Beach. There was nothing like it, still isn’t, and we wanted a shop that had a boutique feeling without being to fruity.  

What are some the brands you are particularly proud to carry – items that are local or rare? Transportation Unit and Welcome skateboards along with Helm Street jewelry, leather, and handmade goods. Can’t forget about our boys at Sk8mafia and JSLV as well. We try and carry brands that aren’t in every mall shop.  What do you feel is going to be the fate of the local independent skate shop?Well we are all going to have to get real creative on getting customers in here and keeping them stoked. We have to compete against the World Wide Web and it ain’t easy. Strong, great customer service is a must.  It’s super easy to sit on your couch, order some thing of the web and have a friggin drone deliver it, but you will not get the human experience at all. People still want that and that’s why they come to HP. 


You were one of the pioneers of marketing and promoting longboards. What are some of your favorite memories of the times when most shops said NO, we won’t carry longboards.

Oh man there are so many of those stories. We literally paved the way and it wasn’t easy. Still to this day the hard core skate crew are still questioning it.  But if you have the right product and family of friends to back it then you can make it happen. 

Photos for sale


If you ran the world, what are one or two things you would do in skateboarding to change things.

Shit I’ve been skateboarding for over 35 years now and I’ve watched it change and changed it as well.  So as far as change, we’ll we did that when I worked at Sector 9. Only other change I would really want is for the companies to stay true,  don’t sell out, it’s a lifestyle so deal with it or kick rocks. Oh and take it out of the Olympics, that’s shits whack! 

Lots of cool items yours to discover.