I found out about Danilo on facebook. There was something truly exceptional about his art that combined a mixture of fun and soulfulness. He currently lives and works in Brazil. I think his art truly captures the fun and chaos that is skateboarding. Enjoy! We have a four page story on Danilo in our latest issue. If you visit his facebook page you will see a lot more work.
It was almost 20 years ago when I received a call from a young Bricin Lyons. He called to tell me about some of the goings on in a magical place called the Sunshine Coast. Bricin has been organizing things for years now and stoking out skate communities around the world. As someone who was born and raised in Pender Harbor, Bricin has been an incredible ambassador for the Sunshine Coast. If you have never been to this part of the world, I urge to consider a trip out there.
Bricin is fond of capital letters, so I’ll let him take it from here:
PRE-REGISTRATION NOW!!! Click here.
**REGULAR REGISTRATION** APRIL 1ST NOON!!!!! @ WWW.LANDYACHTZ.COM
FUNNEST!! BIGGEST RACE IN THE WORLD!!
HUGE EXCITEMENT THIS YEARS DANGER BAY BUSINESS CLASS!!! WERE ON OUR WAY TO 20 YEARS!!!!!
$8000.00 TO THE RACERS!!!
Thanks for your support everyone!!!
Real Action Sports and Comet Skateboards would like to invite the entire community to the 6th Annual Ithaca Skate Jam on May 6th and 7th, 2017. There is now a second day with a new element – a regional Amateur Skateboard Contest at the Ithaca Skate Park.
Day One Saturday – Buffalo Street:
For the past five years Buffalo Street has been the downhill playground everyone has enjoyed. Last year, over 300 skaters from all over the western hemisphere showed off their skills. This year they are doing it again at the same spot – the top of East Buffalo Street between Eddy and Stewart Ave. With fresh pavement at a consistent 15% grade and skate park terrain on Quarry Street (running perpendicular to Buffalo street). The hill starts at Eddy Street and is a 15% downhill to Stewart Ave. There will be some ramps on Buffalo Street to hit as you go down or you can just bomb away. Quarry Street will have several skatepark features and the vendor and food truck area.
The format is a “nontest” style jam. Skate hard all day and the Comet team will be handing out prizes as they see fit. There are no specific contests or divisions. There will be a session for younger and beginner adult skaters from 1-2PM. They are sponsoring 20 young people ages 14 and under to skate at this time with the generous support of a local foundation -TBJ.
Day Two Sunday – Ithica Skatepark:
All Ages are welcome to compete. Divisions will be broken down as follows. 8 and under, 9-10, 11-12, 13-15 and 16 & over unsponsored, Sponsored Team Riders, Womens and Masters 30 and over. The park contest will be run with a Jam format, skate till you bail with a first trick rebate. Heats will run in groups of 15 with a 20 minute practice heat and then a 20 minute judged jam session. Judges will be looking for style, use of park, consistency and difficulty of tricks.
Title Sponsors this year are Comet Skateboards, Vans Shoes, Element Skateboards, Klean Kanteen, Clif Bar, Guayaki Beverages, Greenstar Co-op and Media Sponsor Wheelbase Magazine.
Date: May 6th and 7th, 2017
Time: Registration 9am, Skating 10-5pm
Registration Fee includes an Event T-shirt, Sponsor Swag Bag, a Healthy Lunch, and Beverages.
Day One Online Pre-Reg: $30 (discounted fee expires 4/3), Onsite Reg $40
Day Two Online Pre-Reg: $15 (discounted fee expires 4/3), Onsite Reg $25
Ithaca Skate Jam and The Philadelphia Skateboard Academy bring you Pro/Am Freestyle Demo and Clinics . A select group of Professional and Amateur Freestyle skaters will be on the scene. Ithaca Skate Jam is creating a place for them to have a Warm-Up for the World Freestyle Round Up Championships taking place in BC Canada 2 weeks after Ithaca Skate Jam.
The Good Truck and NYS Fair’s Best Food Truck Winner The SIlo Truck will be on the scene serving up the goodness.Crucial Reggae Social Club featuring members of John Brown’s Body, Roadman, Mosaic Foundation, Sim Redmond Band, Big Mean Sound Machine, Fall Creek Brass Band, Jimkata , and Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad are finishing off the day with a Sunset Set.
Register at ithacaskatejam.com
Comet Skateboards, Vans Shoes, Vans Warped Tour, Element Skateboards, Powerflex Skateboards, Bones Swiss Bearings, Powell Peralta, Original Skateboards, Levi’s Skateboarding, Dickies Skateboarding, Volante Wheels, Salt Rags Skateboarding, Clif Bar, Guayaki Beverages, Gimme! Coffee, Greenstar Co-op, Emmy’s Organics, Viva Taqueria, Silky Jones, Luna inspired Street Food, and Media Sponsor WVBR, Wheelbase Magazine.
I met up with Cindy Whitehead a number of years ago. In November of 2012, an opportunity arose to collaborate with Nano Nobrega of Dusters California. From this initial start, a number of butterfly effects took place. You can learn more here. Cindy has achieved a tremendous amount of success with her Girl is Not a 4 Letter Word movement. The completes she has done with Dusters have been big sellers and her focus on promoting females in skateboarding has been tremendous. Working in conjunction with her husband Ian Logan, Cindy has put together a book on female skaters. The book is called It’s Not About Pretty: A Book About Radical Skater Girls. A portion of the books proceeds give back to 501c3 non-profits that create exposure and opportunities for girls in skateboarding.
Ian Logan checks out a photo.
The 8×10 hardcover book is 144 pages and features 65 different skater girls, from age five to just over fifty years old. From pool riding, park, street, downhill, vert and cruising, to pro female skateboarders and soul skaters – this book covers it all.
The book will be available in bookstores everywhere, as well as on Amazon.com. The book retails for $35.00 USD
It’s been over a month since I was at ISPO. Something has been weighing on my conscious, but I wasn’t quite able to connect the dots. While at ISPO in Germany, I met a number of interesting folks and ran into a few unusual situations. Without naming names, there are a number of people who have borrowed heavily from the Carver Truck. Some have done tributes to Neil Carver’s revolutionary designed truck, others have pretty much copied the design.Behold the CX Surfskate Truck! If copying someone’s idea is the sincerest form of flattery, you could say Carver has been overwhelmed by flattery. The truth is that it takes a lot of hard work and dedication to create something new. The entire crew over at Carver spent years working and promoting a new way to ride. Seems like folks like the feeling of sharp turning…gives them a great work out. But what is sad is that most of these companies that borrowed heavily or were inspired by Carver didn’t once pick up the phone and try and work out something. Some just copied, with no remorse. Well, in the spirit of ripping people off, I ripped off the PEACE SIGN five years ago. From this…thank you Gerald Halton! to this… Four years ago, my good friend John Krieger took the logo and tweaked it. Feel free to steal my idea too.Because I just stole John’s idea…or is more of a tribute? I figure it is for a great cause. Please don’t sue me John!
Where: “Bonfire” Camp in Großerlach, near Stuttgart (SW Germany)
When: June 1st to 6th
More details here: womenlongboardcamp.com
From complete newbies to advanced – this camp has got you covered. A perfect playground for all types of skating. Campfires, swimming pond, resident miniramp, a bunch of rad likeminded ladies – we heartily encourage all female skaters to attend.
Contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org
Where: “Bonfire” Camp in Großerlach, near Stuttgart (SW Germany)
When: June 1st to 6th
More details here: womenlongboardcamp.com
From complete newbies to advanced – this camp has got you covered. A perfect playground for all types of skating. Campfires, swimming pond, resident miniramp, a bunch of rad likeminded ladies – we heartily encourage all female skaters to attend.
Contact them at email@example.com
First off, realize that what you are about to read is not going to discuss the art of ‘SKATEBOARDING’. Instead, what you are about to read will discuss the ‘ART’ of skateboarding. Does this make sense? If not, let me briefly illustrate. Picture yourself skating down a hill or trying to master a trick on your dope new deck. This involves balance, coordination, distribution of weight, the ability to use different parts of your body, blah, blah, blah. In short, I’m not going to talk about this. This is because—to me—the aforesaid would be the art of knowing how to ride a skateboard and do tricks. Hence, the art of ‘skateboarding’. Alternatively, I’d like discuss some of the actual artwork seen on the back and/or bottom of skateboards. This would be the ‘art’ of skateboarding (excluding stickers, accessories, and apparel of course). Mike Sieben’s artwork. I am not a professional skateboard artist. Yet, I do produce skateboard art. Simply put, it is a hardcore hobby of mine. With this being the case, I would like to discuss (1) how I got into this craft, (2) a certain experience every artistic skater remembers, (3) some of the intensions skateboard companies have with their brand of art, and (4) where to find documented collections of bad-ass skate art. Now, let’s get started. The Epiphany (How I got into Designing Boards)Growing up—and in my early adulthood—I was always an ‘on-and-off’ skateboarder. And, because of being ‘on-and-off’ during my skate endeavors—I was never very good. Plain and simple, the friends and associates I hung out with were always a bit better than me. Thus, I’d always be the worst in the group when it came to skating. Yet, on the flipside to being the worst in the group at skateboarding, I was the best in the group at being an artist. Now…. I’m not claiming that I am Picasso here. Nor am I claiming that my artwork is dreadful to look at. In my head—and what seems real in my world—is that I’m decent at doodling. Therefore, my epiphany was to combine skateboards with my art. And voilà; I have been doing it since.Tupac by Kevin Carmody Art swung into the skate industry hard in the early 90’s. In my opinion, this surge of skate art is best described as ‘the blissful days of skateboard graphics’. But even before the 90’s, skateboards had stunning artwork on them. I’m guessing that at some point companies decided they didn’t want just words, phrases, or logos on their decks. They wanted art. Speaking of this, I can recall my dad taking me to our local sporting goods store to ‘make the skateboard switch.’ What I mean is that my father allowed me to shift from a cheesy board (i.e. a Nash) to a real board. To this day, I can clearly remember all the unbelievable artwork on the wall. This blew my mind. I gazed, gawked, admired, stared, and observed for quite some time. Then I made my decision.A Powell Peralta Mike McGill was my first ‘real skateboard’. Just think about it. How could a 10-year-old boy deny a bad-ass skull with a snake wrapped through it? I couldn’t refuse this skateboard and it was because of the artwork. Accordingly, this is one reason why skate companies use art that is distinct. Artwork by Kevin Carmody Let’s face it folks, most young skaters are not scholarly individuals. Sure, I’m 36 now and have three college degrees. However, there was a time I was nothing more than a regular skate rat. What I am trying to justify is that skate businesses know their buyers. Therefore, they will adopt a definitive art style that fits their brand. To clarify—think about a couple of simple questions: (1) What ten-year-old kid walks into a skate shop and asks if a certain deck is made with 7 ply Canadian Maple? And (2), do they ever inquire if one deck has more pop than the other? Most kids don’t ask this. I know this because I once worked in a skate shop. Simply put, youngsters want a board with sick artwork. We should also recognize that to a child, teen, or young adult—sick artwork doesn’t have to have deep meaning. With this mentioned, some of what you see on the bottom/back of a skateboard is created just for the hell of it. However, this isn’t always the case. Hence, some of what is seen on the back/bottom of a deck is ‘not’ created just for the hell it. And, a lot of this has been chronicled. Where & How to Find Good Skateboard ArtIt is safe to say that skateboard art travels in its own direction. Presumably, this is the reason why the ‘art’ of skateboarding has been noticed and documented. As a matter of fact, there are clear-cut manuals that cover vast oceans of this type of art. I believe that Sean Cliver’s Disposable: A History of Skateboard Art is the best destination for someone interested in the world of skate art. Within this bible, there isn’t just harebrained designs. There is much more to be looked at. Some of these decks have master pieces on them. In short, this book holds a different breed of art. Not only…buy also—some of this art may even be considered controversial and unapologetic. Yet still, somehow these works fly just below the radar and never hit the mainstream. Biggie Smalls by Kevin Carmody In closing—I don’t want to name every ‘go to’ for the best sources of collected skate art. After all, doing your own research might help surface a new undiscovered assemblage of great artwork. There is plenty out there. It is just hard to find. Like I said, these works are deep-seated in the wild. Again, they aren’t recognized in the mainstream. The ‘art’ of skateboarding is underground, low-brow, rampant and feral—and I love it. In fact, I firmly believe you should love it too. So, go treasure trove for some skate art and let your eyes have some fun. I promise—there is a beautiful piece of artwork on the bottom of a skateboard just for you. Thanks for reading.
Today marks the third anniversary of one of the most important people in both the skateboard and snowboard world – Wee Willi Winkles. If you want to know your roots, take a moment to read this.
Willie contributed so much to action sports, it is really impossible to put it into a blog post. Suffice to say, if you ride a laminated board, you can thank Willi. If you wondered where the word SNOWBOARD came from, look to Willi. He also impacted wake boarding…and believe it or not, redesigned the half pipe to make it ridable. Willi thought up the name SNOWBOARD and rode the first prototypes. I first saw Willi Winkels at a demo in July of 1977 in London, Ontario. His team were incredible. He even raced around on a motorized skateboard. My mind was fully blown. Twenty years later, I tracked Willi down and interviewed him for my book The Concrete Wave. I had the privilege to know Willi and a week before he passed, I was able to interview him. Willi continues to inspire skaters with this photo, which remains of the most iconic in all of skateboarding. On behalf of riders everywhere, THANK YOU WILLI! One of the greatest, most iconic skate photos of all time.
On March 11, Wellington City Council, International Skateboarder’s Union, Redhead or Dead Events,
Skateboarding New Zealand and Miryoku Agency staged the New Zealand 2017 Park / Bowl
Skateboarding Championships with BOWLZILLA Wellington in the Nation’s Capital
SBNZ and ISU combined to establish the first ever New Zealand National Skateboarding Park / Bowl
competition series. Wellington maintained its reputation for inconvenient weather for the entire weekend but luckily the Open and Masters divisions could be held and winners chosen.
1 R.J Barbaro – BOWLZILLA Wellington 2017 Open Champion
2 Shaun Boucher – SBNZ National Open Park / Bowl Skating Champion 2017
3 Willy Lara
4 Bowman Hansen
5 Mike Bancroft
1 Leigh McKenzie
2 Stephen Crump
3 Nick Bennett
4 Ramon Thackwell
5 Nic Couscouris
6 Lee Ralph
There was NZ$15,000 in prize money distributed amongst the Open and Masters divisions. There was also
$2000 worth of prizes, donated by; Fusion Surf / Skate, Vans and Dickies, for the 16 & Under and Women’s
divisions, which were equally distributed amongst all the competitors after the wash out.
Chris Wood-Frontside grind
Park / Bowl skating is clearly on the rise in New Zealand as was evidenced by the new talent entering the
competitions over summer and the rise in skill level of the current skaters. The new series we established
here at SBNZ is a real boost for the local scene and is bringing out more riders from near and far.
Even with the challenging weather BOWLZILLA Wellington was a capital success with the festival hosting a number of events.
Chris Wood, nollie frontside tailgrab
Photo Connor Hill
The ARTZILLA – art show, which was produced by Manky Chops, Fusion Surf / Skate – welcome barbecue, the
competition and wrapping it up with the Dive In – party at San Fran with the SUB:BASS crew raising the
roof for the final celebration.
Willy Lara – BodyJar
Photo: Connor Hill
Chad Ford, the Director of Bowlzilla said “this year BOWLZILLA Wellington was a real game changer for us. We managed to triple the prize purse, saw an increase in international competitors, more friends and fans at the festival events, far more support from a wider group of sponsors and the growing talent of the skaters. It means we have a long future in Wellington.”
Shaun Boucher – Backside feeble grind
Photo: Connor Hill
Bowlzilla would like to acknowledge and thank all of the international attending skaters for their support of the
event and skateboarding in New Zealand; Louis Newman – Australia (16 & Under), Sari Simpson – Australia
(Women), Nic Couscouris – USA (Masters), Sean Goff – UK (Masters), Willy Lara – USA (Open), Patrick
Ryan – USA (Open).
I’m not sure how or why I think these things up. Maybe it’s because I believe so hard in journalistic integrity and transparency… or maybe it’s just because I’m back at the magazine after a long hiatus, and I’m sort of curious about who our writers, photographers, and editors are these days. Either way, I thought a “Meet The Staff” column might be kinda fun. So without further ado, here’s the first of the series featuring our own leading lady, Candice Dungan: Hello, Candy! Nice to meet ya! Would you mind telling me a little about yourself…? It’s great to meet you! I’m a downhill skateboard racer, writer, and feminist. I’ve been longboarding for 4.5 years, and skateboarding for 3.5 years. I placed 2nd overall for Women’s category in the 2016 NorAm IDF Circuit – my rookie year racing IDF. I’m currently working 50-hour weeks to raise the funds to race the IDF World Circuit in 2017. I also have a background in snowboarding; as a teenager, I was a snowboard competitor at a national level. At the time, I preferred competing in slopestyle but actually placed my best in slalom and giant slalom (where I raced on a park board against girls racing alpine boards). I guess speed has always been my thing! I have a Public Relations degree from Kent State University, and I spent two years working PR for a ski/snowboard association before breaking off to work as a freelancer. Although I enjoy PR, writing is my real passion. Lastly, I’m a feminist. I hope that word doesn’t scare you; I am not a man-hater. I believe in equality for all genders, races, ages, economic statuses – everyone. I also have the upmost respect for men who support women in their search for equality. I greatly appreciate the opportunity to write for Concrete Wave and help produce more women-oriented content. I want women to feel welcome, accepted, and appreciated by the skate community. Here’s our gal…! No, I’m not scared of titles like “feminist”. Nor should you be scared of titles like “King Catcrap”, which I think is mine here at the magazine. This is a team effort. Welcome to the team. Candice, Mikey and I are burning with curiosity. Here’s the burning question of the moment: What in the f’n hell does this industry need to do, to get more girls involved with this gig…?! IASC really wants to know. But, don’t tell them. Tell Mikey and I. As for growing the women’s scene – there’s many different facets. I believe the most pressing are media, gear, and community. 1. Media: women are inherently discouraged from skateboarding at a very young age; this is western culture. However, we can counteract this. When women see other women skateboarding, they are encouraged to skateboard. We can encourage women to skateboard by sharing media of women’s skateboarding – and by not sharing media of women scantily clad on (or near) a skateboard. Showing images of half-naked women is detrimental to womens’ psyches because culture tells women from a very young age that how they look is most important. We want to tell them that how they look has nothing to do with it and that they are as capable as men to learn skills such as skateboarding. 2. Gear: Most longboarding gear on the market does not fit women. We have extremely small feet compared to men, and we need skateboards that fit our feet. For example, most decks on the market are 9.5-10″. My custom longboard deck is 8.5″. I had to custom make myself a deck because not one downhill deck on the market fits my women’s size 7 feet. Size 7 is the most common foot size for women. It’s equivalent to a kids’ (boys) size 5. For me to ride a normal longboard, is like my boyfriend trying to downhill skate a luge – it doesn’t work. We can’t get leverage. Most male skaters (aka the people who design majority of skateboard equipment) do not think about women’s feet. Shop employees don’t think about women’s feet. This means that majority of women are skating gear that doesn’t fit them. Think about how much harder it would be for a women to learn to snowboard on a men’s snowboard than on a women’s snowboard – there’s a reason there’s “men” and “women” snowboards. Unfortunately, no one in the longboard industry has figured this out, and it’s holding women back from progressing. 3. Community: Women relate to women. I usually skateboard with all guys, but when I do get to skateboard with women – I have way more fun! Even if we’re skating MUCH less challenging hills. This is because women have the same shared experiences and relate best to each other. I started the Rad Girls Krew in Colorado, and we’ve gone from 4 longboard girls to 20 in 6 months. Having other girls to skateboard with is a huge huge huge encouragement to women’s skateboarding. The places where girls skate crews exist (Colorado, Vancouver, Europe, etc), you will see the largest amount of women’s skateboarding. We vibe off each other, learn better from each other, and feel more comfortable with other women. Feet. Feet…! So elementary. Mike, have we ever heard “feet” discussed as a contributing factor…? I sure haven’t. Candice is right though: the snowboarders have this way more dialed in than we do. And their participation numbers are huge. At least, far superior to ours here in skate. Coincidence? I think not… Candice: which companies… skate companies… are the most responsive to women’s needs? If any…? Honestly, I can’t think of any companies that are responsive to women’s gear needs. Some companies have made okay decks for some women, but those choices are few and far between. When a woman goes to a skate shop, she’d be lucky if two decks in there fit her foot; options are extremely slim. I personally wouldn’t want to ride any deck on the market, and I’m curious how many women would agree. However, I know what it’s like to have a deck that fits me, when most women do not. I’ve had some brands personally support me and (by association) the women’s scene:
- Seismic funded an amazing “welcome to the team” skate video for me. That did wonders for the women’s skate community because it was such a high production female skate video.
- Hi5ber, my new board sponsor, is making me a pro model that resembles the deck I designed for myself (8.5″ wide, radial concave). This will be the first time an 8.5″ downhill longboard will be available on the market through an established brand.
Some women try to chop their deck (cut it to make it narrower), but then they lose the concave. It’s not a very inclusive market to women… or to groms. Kids also have small feet, and I know plenty who have tried to cut their decks narrower too. Here are two markets that need something the market isn’t providing – when are they going to catch on? How about actually making us a smaller helmet for females? There’s only two, suitable, full-face helmets that fit me on the market – one is not even certified for downhill skateboarding. And, again, what about the groms? Look at her go…! How important are aesthetics to all this? Graphics, art direction, etc? Specifically, what can the magazine do better, in terms of girls’ coverage? Hit me. I’m all big, floppy ears. As for gear aesthetics – lol. I haven’t even considered that. I’m happy with anything that fits and works well. With that said, I customize everything to my liking. My decks include galaxy duct tape, gold duct tape racing stripes, a power wedge, cardboard to add a W for my back foot, gold spray paint, stencils, and tons of stickers… I even customized my own grip tape by using a laser printer to engrave “SLAY” into the grip. The “A” is an anarchy/feminism sign. I customize everything to my liking; I’ve had to, and I’ve learned to like it – a lot. So for gear aesthetics, I’m probably not a good person to ask. For media aesthetics, and advertisements, I think women just want to see women skateboarding. It sounds so simple, and is expected for men’s media, but it’s actually few and far between. You give me a sick photo of a women skating, put a brand name on it, and I’m now interested in that brand. That’s all it takes because we are so lucky even to have that. For overall how to improve women’s coverage: more women’s skateboarding. Share stories of women who are kicking ass, share women’s crews who are kicking ass, share women’s specific events, share info about gear that fits women, etc. I would love to see the online site have a specific “women’s” section that only shared videos and articles that relate to women. That would make it so easy to “one-stop-shop” for women’s skate info, which is currently very hard to find. I have an important question here. How, where, and why did you get into skateboarding…? But, maybe more importantly: did you feel any sense that you weren’t welcome to participate from anybody…? Did you get any pushback from anybody for wanting to skate? Or, have you generally been welcomed into skateboarding with open arms…? A female friend who I snowboarded with first introduced me to longboarding. It was summer, and I was at her house complaining about how I missed snowboarding. She told me to “stop bitching,” handed me her longboard, and told me to skate around the block. That’s exactly what I did, and I fell in love. I bought my first longboard that day. At first, I was welcomed with open arms; I even had my own girls skate crew that I learned with. But, as time progressed, drama and egos got involved with both the guys and girls! Then I moved to Colorado, where there was even more drama/egos, and way less women skating. Thankfully, I had a mini support system of a few men who saw my determination and wanted to see a chick shred. They taught me everything I know, and my skating soon spoke for itself. Some of the adversity is normal for all skaters, but some things I experienced were specifically because I am a woman. For example, not many of the guys wanted to skate with me/teach me because they couldn’t see me as a “homie.” Some guys just can’t see girls as friends, and that’s something I still deal with to this day. There are some guys that will skate in the crew with me, but outside of skating they have no interest in getting to know me and they don’t feel comfortable having a real conversation with me. There’s been a few times that I’ve shown up to skate events and the guys all introduce themselves to the other guys, while no one says hello to me or asks me my name – I’m completely ignored. I don’t know if this is because they assume I’m just someone’s girlfriend, or are intimidated by me, or just don’t know how to act around a female. Whatever it is, I’ve begun calling them out on it when it happens – I can’t even begin to explain how satisfying it is to watch them stumble over their words and try to find an excuse that doesn’t exist. My guy friends have also partaked in the fun, occassionally, which makes it even better. As much ignorance that still exists, there are a lot of men who want to see women succeed. Those are the men that I surround myself with. Do you enjoy other types of skateboarding, outside of downhill? Do you skate street, parks, bowls, slalom, etc…? I skate bowls! I started skating bowls when I moved to Colorado. I enjoy the chillness of it – you’re just hanging with your homies, drinking PBR, and taking turns getting slammed. It’s my favorite thing to do on a weekend afternoon. How old are you, Candice? And where do you hail from? I know they’re totally stock questions, but I forgot to ask them anyway… I’m 26, born in Seattle, raised in Ohio, and living in Colorado. Who has inspired you the most? Are there an ladies (or guys, for that matter) that you’ve looked up to throughout your skating career? I looked up to Emily Pross and Rachel Bagels the most when I first started getting into DH. Emily because she was racing the guys, and Bagels because she improved so quickly. I remember watching a video about Bagels’ year improvement and thinking, “I want to progress that fast!” Looking back on it, they both were monumental to where I am today. Emily showed me I could race the boys, and Bagels showed me I could progress quickly – both things I’ve accomplished and will always continue striving for. At that point in my skate career, I needed to see women to inspire me. I knew guys were talented, but I needed to see some women throw down, so I could feel like I could do it too. Now, Dre Nubine and Aaron Hampshire inspire me the most. The truth is, most men can’t inspire me because I’m not a man. They may be great skaters, but that doesn’t mean they support women, and I can’t be inspired by anyone who doesn’t support women. Dre and Aaron inspire me for many reasons. They have unique style, great form, and are fast as all hell. But, they also support me, help me progress, get stoked when I improve, lift me up when I’m feeling down, stand up for me whenever necessary, and don’t give a F if anyone disagrees with them for it. Josh Wright, Devon Reece, and Raul Sanchez also fall into this group; they may not be IDF racers, but they inspire me daily with their attitudes and insights. I have so much respect for all four of these men, and I can only hope that every woman has a similar support system available to them. How did you come to be involved with the magazine, Candice? Dan Gesmer from Seismic Skate put me in touch with Michael when Michael said he wanted a team of women to cover women issues in the magazine! Any final words…? The floor is yours, ma’am…! Thanks! -Candy
This past January, I went to Cuba for my dad’s birthday. It was my first time there and I was so surprised about Cuba’s history that I’ve learned from the locals. Firstly, I did not expect to get a chance to meet some riders. Cuba is a small country and it can get very expensive for locals to buy skate gear. Actually in Varadero and around there’s no skateshop.
Varadero has an attractive park with a little river surrounding it. I was out skating and by chance, I met up with a 15 year old skater. He was wearing an Amigo Skate Cuba t-shirt. This is a group base in La Habana in order to help the skate community all over the country. It’s aim is to initiate kids and adults in our world.
Turns out his name was Christian and he invited me for a session with some of his skater friends. A few days later, I tried to reach them by FB Messenger. It turns out it, this was impossible. My “super wi-fi” connection was poor in my resort. I was feeling disappointed because I had lots of gifts that I brought from Canada. I had stickers, t-shirts from one of our skateshops in Montréal, (Boutique Rollin).
Two days before I was to return, I was longboarding again in the center of Varadero at sunset. I heard someone screaming my name very loud. It was Cristian with his friend. They were barefoot with their boards and we went riding around the city together. They were planning to to Judo training but when they saw me they decided to skateboard – even without shoes. It was a very funny unexpected session at sunset.
We then decided that for my last day in this small paradise, to meet up after their school class. A group of about 5 riders and skateboarding in that small park. Cristian told me that they were so stoked to see a 31 years old women, gringa, longboarding. It was great to have to have a chance to share my passion with all those amazing skaters. Each of us are unique and have a story to tell. It’s important to listen people that we find on our travels.
At the end of my travels, I finally got the chance to give away my gifts. I didn’t have a lot, but for them it was huge to have small pieces like bearings which you cannot easily find in Cuba. I learned a lot with those Cuban’s teenagers. In fact they have almost nothing when it comes to material possessions, but they still enjoying their life on that small island everyday.
We are not conscious about the things that we are missing if we don’t know they exist . One of keys of happiness, I think. Cristian is currently working hard to create a bigger group of Cubanos and bring them in that sport. Unfortunately he told me that the government don’t want to put a skatepark in Varadero, because they have one in an another city – in Cardenas This is about half an hour from Varadero. I think a park in Cardenas would be a great idea.
Definitely, I would like to contribute more to Cuba. It truly is a beautiful country. I want to help the skateboard industry to grow more there. Cristian told me that recently there were two guys from Puerto Rico who came to his city and gave him some skateboards as a gift. So if you’re planning to visit Cuba, think about brining something for the locals. For sure they will appreciate it!
Tomorrow (March 11) marks the 6th anniversary of the world’s first longboard tradeshow. Chances are if you were there, you have not forgotten it. And if you weren’t there, you wish you had been. The atmosphere from the very start was pure electricity. You could FEEL the power of the movement. The memories are too numerous to list. It was hilarious watching the guy from Nersh Wheels pull up in a freaking Lamborghini! The show was held it at the now closed Longboard Loft. This was a shop that Bustin Boards was about to open and the timing was perfect. We crammed this shop with vendors and you could barely move. I am surprised the fire department didn’t show up. We were able to jam 32 skateboard brands into the room and for 8 hours, the longboard industry rejoiced in a movement that had truly arrived. Push Culture News did a story about the preparation. Theseus Williams worked his ass off getting the room ready. That’s Theseus Williams – master builder! Hell, even Transworld Business covered it. The show is particularly memorable for me because it was the first time I met Noel Korman. I will never forget Noel and when he cruised into the shop, he put out it his hand and said, “I’m Noel Korman with the Shralper’s Union. If you need anything, just let me know.” I had not heard about the Union before, but from the moment I met Noel, I knew that the show would be in good hands. I also want to give a shout out to Luke Ayata who I also met at the event. With Noel’s passing, we’ve become very close. I will be back in NYC on April 22 to Roll for Noel at Central Park.That’s Noel with the bald head. There was a bar next door called Lucky Jacks. I think there was as much business conducted there as there was at the shop! You can get a sense of the action here. Warning: my voice is haggard. But it was truly a great time.We covered the show in the April 2011 issue. Take a peek here.
Bear Walker claims that his inherent manual labor skills originate from a background of working his way up from hauling debris to completing framing and finishing work for his father’s construction company. Before long,
Bear Walker, founder of Kodiak Boards.
Walker began to pursue his skill set down a more artistic path. In attaining a degree in Graphics from Clemson, his capstone project of a metallic ink skateboard sparked his interest in skateboard design that would eventually manifest itself to become Kodiak Boards.
From there, Walker embarked on a painstaking journey of trial and error to select the best wood, plies and configurations for developing his own line of longboards and cruisers. As he described the process of ups and downs, “Some snapped, some looked strange, some were too stiff, too flexible, too hard to carve into, too soft to withstand the wear and tear of being a longboard.”
Bear ensures that the boards are produced flawlessly.
Above all, finding the balance between functionality as grip and maintenance of the boards integrity posed the largest problem in designing Kodiak Boards’ iconically carved top layers. As someone who rides the boards every day looking for potential flaws, Walker is confident that the top carving pattern actually improves grip, in the absence of grip tape.
The CNC design on the top of the deck means you can go griptape free.
To achieve the intricately cut patterns, Walker designs each individual line and uses a tabletop CNC to etch the designs out. Typically, after up to 10 attempts to perfect each of Kodiak Boards’ models, Walker is ready to move on to what he cites is the real work of the process. Once off the machine, each board goes through a sanding process that provides a hand filed finish to every edge of the board. From there, the bottoms of each deck are routed, sanded and branded en route to receiving the secret Kodiak Boards touch. In the end, the polished look is set to withstand all sorts of weather, routing abuse and plenty of good times.
In sum, six years after the foremost design, Kodiak Boards recently came back from the shores of a photoshoot in Costa Rica for the launch of their new line of 23” Surfers. You can check up on the process of this drop on their Instagram here.
Today is International Women’s Day and we are proud to be celebrating all female skaters (and soon to be female skaters.) I was delighted to hear from Striker Reese who heads up Walk With Queens.Lady IndiaThe company uses laser engraving to give their decks a truly dynamic look.
The debt collection entitled “OG Queens” brings female centric art to skateboard decks. The 7 ply maple decks have a limited run of 100 decks per design.
OG Queens draws on the beauty of womanhood in the ancient world. They get their Inspiration from Cleopatra VII, Pharaoh Hatshepsut and many others. The vision was to combine their love of skateboarding with some much needed appreciation of womanhood.
Hours of research goes into the historical and cultural aspects of each design. The average production time is 5 hours just for one board.
Each deck takes about 5 hours to laser engrave.
Longboarding for Peace is setting off early next month for a weeklong expedition to Jamaica. I have been wanting to visit the island for many years. However, I always wanted to go with a local. I felt that if I was going to visit, I would teach skateboarding and really give something back. I am delighted to be traveling with Brady Brown (who now lives in Toronto and has deep family ties to Jamaica) and Luis Bustamante who originally hails from the Philippines. Together we will be creating a mini-documentary of our exploits. We have reached out to several Jamaican organizations and plans are underway to really engage with local skaters and schools. We’ll have a few announcements as things get firmed up. The bottom line, we are truly excited to spread the high fives and positive vibes. If you have any contacts in Jamaica that you think would benefit from Longboarding for Peace, just email. Artist: Chris Dyer
Congratulations to All!
1970’s – ERA 1
1970’s – ERA 2
1980’s – ERA 2
ICON AWARD…announced next Monday!
Photos courtesy of Warren Bolster
Whether you found skateboarding through video games, television, or just the aversion to everything going on around you, what a relief it was to find something of your own. While being a very individualistic activity allowing limits to be pushed and creativity to flourish, it was always a relief to find others to skate with. We skated curbs behind funeral homes and were chased off the church 5 stair. We met other groups of skaters and pulled construction materials in developments to make ramps and rails. We still had a “we” and instead of a school sanctioned team, we had our local skate spots and skate shop. In these times of point and click online shopping, the brick and mortar store still serves as the community’s rally point.Scott Lembach and Joe Gutkowski of Muirskate: The Muir van is an integral part of the San Diego downhill community, serving as advertising while bringing skaters out to ride what they sell. Skaters and independent skate shops need to have a symbiotic relationship. At the most basic, skaters need product, and the shop needs to pay rent. I spoke to three shops that I feel loyal to because of the way they build the scene knowing that the scene will, in turn, build the shop. I found common themes through each conversation. Kerry at Dayone in Fairfield, Connecticut told me about Jeff the owner’s love for the newbie. One day a minivan pulled up and out jumped a little guy running splayed footed to the door. He ripped the door open and the smile dropped off his face. “Skateboards?” He was excited to get his first pair of hockey skates. Jeff laughed, it wasn’t a customer, but that smile and the anticipation of a new activity is what he loved. Kerry shares this sentiment about the new guy and last year, ran a promotion for one free lesson with the purchase of your first board. Kids and their parents ate it up. While serving as a first acquaintance to their new skateboard these lessons were also the first invite into the community. The promotion gave parents piece of mind that their little idiot would at least have some sense of keeping himself safe. As the guy behind the counter, you’re the one the smaller kids look up to, the one the seasoned skaters get along with, and the one who helps helicopter parents understand. You, first and foremost, represent the tone of the community, whether that’s going to be an elitist exclusionary club, or welcome everyone with open arms. A successful independent skate shop is not just a pick and go store, it’s a destination in itself. When you walk in, you’re immersed in what you love and surrounded by others who share that sentiment.Muirskate started out as a brick and mortar store on a college campus. When they turned their focus to online sales and grew exponentially, they showed that same growth in their community building. Their event, Downhill Disco, has costumed skaters through various obstacle courses, big air, and slide contests. The event culminates in an after party with bands playing, skaters throwing hard on the mini ramp, and good times with old and new friends.Will Myrvold Owner of Xtreme Board Shop with his welcoming smile. Even when I’ve had to swing by Muir to grab a set of pucks, watching the packagers putting orders together, or Scott leading the place at a million miles an hour, it’s simple to see that this is a skater run, skater supported, skater supporting company. Nothing says more than this than the bathroom walls covered with pinned notes from customers. When your skate shop is also place to skate, Dayone has a ramp out back (Open during shop hours with a waiver), skaters have a place to congregate without being hassled by the nail salon workers with the ledge. The shop is no longer just a shop, the shop is skateboarding. In addition to Dayone’s ramp, they also worked with the town and the local skaters to replace the prefab YMCA park with a well thought out concrete bowl and street course. They connected with the skate park advocates in the area and attended town hall meetings to further the conversation. Using their connections within the industry, they brought in New England’s Breaking Ground, saving the town money by eliminating the expense of housing the workers. Using local builders only furthered the connection the shop had to the local skaters and the local industry. They now see good traffic in between the shop and the park and have even placed the shop on the same side of the Post road, saving the skaters from running across the busy street. Xtreme board shop, led by Will Myrvold, is the local shop to the iconic downhill run GMR. GMR has been the training ground for many prominent racers, from 2011 world champion Mischo Erban, to today’s dominator Tim Del, to up and coming Morgan Smith. When I first saw Morgan skate, his father drove the follow car and we watched him stand tall around one of the tougher corners and disappear into a bush. We threw him into the car and the Xtreme locals gave him tips and showed him how to manage the hill to the point that now he’s proving his own at local races. Knowing that “There’s a special kind of stupid to be a skateboarder,” the Xtreme community is self-policing in the matter of safety, knowing that a good relationship with the town and police allows them to continue to skate the gem.Dayone’s art show: Culture building within the community by skater-accessible art by Kevin “Klav” Derken.Will and his riders take it a step further with Xtreme rider, Ryan Farmer, spearheading hill cleanups. After an early morning skate, the riders walk up the hill, filling trash bags as they go. These cleanups have been featured in the local paper and lend well to the acceptance the skaters on the hill. One of the largest personalities and biggest contributors to the downhill community, Joe Lawrence, was a big part of Xtreme until his last days, and after his passing, continues to be. Downhill boards and equipment can be tougher to move than the consumable street products. When Joe and Will saw buy/sell/trade forums popping up online, instead of being upset at the competition, they offered the shop as a location for gear swaps. They saw the necessity in bringing this idea to a face to face community gathering. Skaters could stand on the board and check the quality and condition of products they wanted to trade or buy. Drawing everyone to the shop allowed Xtreme to sell the accessories to complete purchases. One thing I heard from each head of shop was the intent on building culture within the community. Art has always been a large part of skateboarding, especially in the homogenous industry of street skating. Dayone has held periodic art galleries. Kerry said the art was nice to look, but was priced out of a skater’s range. The art hung in the shop for a month then was collected by the artist. When his old friend Kevin “Klav” Derken held a show, he made small sculptures and figures priced between 10 and 15 dollars. The community ate that up and Klav sold 89 pieces.Dayone’s shop decks capture the local community. Both Xtreme and Dayone have in house screen printing. Dayone screens their shop decks and shirts designed by Klav. Will at Xtreme has his work horse 4 color press bought from one of the riders. In between orders for local companies, event posters and shirts, merch for other skate shops, he screens the XBS “La Familia” shirts. La Familia was Will’s goal coming into the industry. This is the community that the shop cultivates. The only qualification to be in is to want to be in. There’s no room for rejection and Will explains that it doesn’t matter how kooky any one is, once you’re in La Familia, you’re in for life. Through all sorts of petty squabbles that can arise within any group of people, even more compounded by the general weirdness of skaters, Will’s message is that it’s still family.Riding the road maintained by the XBS Familia. Joe Lawrence, died last year from liver failure, I joined the rest of La Familia at the skate shop in Glendora. Will led everyone in a moment of silence. People passed by offering their condolences to whoever looked in need. I joined in wholesome activities behind the shop with other members of the Xtreme team and we took turns telling the stories that this insane individual had left us. The news had hit us hard that week and here we all were, laughing our asses off at how lost Joe would get on skate trips. Low spirits were all turned around gathering at GMR’s local shop. The location and the man behind it were the central point the rest of us orbited. The shop and the community are part of one system that is necessary for us in the best times, and the worst. Operating an independent skate shop can be a precarious position. With different seasons, and the rise and fall of trends, some days are easier than others. Some skaters come and go, part of everyone stays for life. It’s 2017. Faces are buried in cellphones and products are bought on the fly with next day delivery. There’s no substitute for the face to face, or the real world congregation. Independent skate shops will always hold one thing above online shopping, the physical location and real world community building. When the options are open, this is what they rely on to keep the lights on and the doors open.Kerry said about what keeps him most motivated in the shop. “How much it sucked when he didn’t have a skate shop. Even on the days when there’s no money or you owe money, at least we’ve got this place, so it’s really special.”
Each year I visit Munich to attend ISPO. There are a ton of amazing skate products along with numerous great people. I always make it a point to get to the ISPO innovation area. This year, a backpack caught my eye. It’s from a Canadian expat who now lives in Denmark. His name is Adrian Solgaard and his company, Solgaard, is creating some pretty interesting products.This man is secretly Canadian. Adrian and I immediately hit it off and I was pretty damn impressed with his backpack that he was showcasing at his booth. Seems like I’m not the only one – the company raised over 1.2 million dollars on Kickstarter. What is fascinating about this backpack is that it literally has every conceivable thing a skater could want. 1. It has a proprietary lock – you can lock this bag to a fence or table. This is a crucial feature because sometimes you fear your bag is going to get lifted if you are at skatepark. 2. It has a phenomenal speaker – and you can play music for up to 96 hours 3. As crucial as the lock is a solar charger. You can charge your phone up to 6 times. 4. There are hidden pockets to hide your cash or secret phone numbers! There are more features, but these four alone make the pack a skater’s perfect backpack. Of course, true skateboard backpacks also include straps to hold the board. While this could be something that Solgaard could add to future products, I am not sure how much it would help things. The backpack is truly exceptional. Kudos to Adrian and his entire team! If you are interested, you can purchase one here.
This weeks spotlight shines on Philadelphia’s own Spin, a four-piece rock group who’s latest single ‘Dig Your Own Grave” is off their latest EP ‘Meant To Rise’ which was released January 2017. “Dig Your Own Grave” is a ripping tune that leads you through a no holds bared journey of play now, pay later. Reminiscent of The Cult with the energy of The Struts, if you like guitar and drum based rock these guys are right up your alley. Check out the video and be sure to watch all the way through, the mini movie at the end is hilarious! Ultimately, you are the best judge of what you like. Give it a listen and let us know what you think.
I received an email from a skater’s mom the other day. Here’s a snippet of what she wrote:
Love this magazine and website! My son Drew is totally into tech and downhill….buddies with sergio yuppie…..you all are a very “colorful” tribe…love it! Wondering if i can add his photo to your online album?
Well Dana, in my 20 years publishing on the web, this is the first time I’ve ever received an email like this. In honor of this groundbreaking email, your digital wish is my command:
Behold! The photo of your son, Drew.
As we all know, there are literally unlimited pixels on the web. I can generate hundreds of thousands of words and images and it won’t cost me much…except time. I’ve often said that the web can create more content on skateboarding in one hour than I can publish in a lifetime. This abundance (and ability) to create so much content is both fantastic and overwhelming.
I’ve been involved with skateboarding websites since 1996. You can see my original Skategeezer Homepage here. I think it’s hilarious that a ridiculously basic (and frankly crappy) website led me on a journey into the world of book publishing, TV, film and other media. I cannot stress enough the butterfly effect. My $5 month investment keeps paying dividends. But then again, I never stopped skating and never lost the fire for spreading the stoke.
Many are trying to figure out what kind of effect digital technology is having on the skate world. Can you trust online reviews? How is online retailing affecting the indy skate shops? Sometimes I wonder that by the time you’ve made the skate video and posted it to YouTube or facebooked, instagramed, twittered and snapchatted if there is any time left to actually ride.
And yet, here’s our CW website featuring a pretty cool shot of Drew enjoying the ride. We might wind up with a few thousand folks viewing this image and I am sure it will stoke him out. And at the end of the day, isn’t that what’s important.
So here’s to you Drew and to your family who support your efforts. Keep skating and have fun!