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Goodbye to the Core Skateshop?

Thursday, March 20th, 2008

skateshopDo you remember the days when you would stroll down to your local skateshop to get some goods and just chill out? Remember meeting up with your friends, watching skate videos, or just hanging out and talking with the shop owner about the latest skateboard news? Chances are you do and if you are like me, you miss it dearly.

An increase in mall shops has devastatingly decreased the core skateshop that we all grew up loving. The mall shops move in and take business away from the ‘core’ skateshops. Parents take their kids to the mall and save themselves the hassle of that one extra stop by the skateshop. They would rather have there grip tape applied by some girl that has no clue what she’s doing. Not to mention in an atmosphere that has the vibe of “buy and leave” written all over it. No skateboard videos playing, no actual skateboarders working there, sometimes not even a bench to sit down and relax on.

With a core shop you can go in and pick up that extra piece of hardware you broke, and it will be on the house. You wouldn’t have to buy the whole packet and leave like you do when you’re at a corporate store.

For many professional skateboarders out there it all started with the core shop hooking them up on the shop team. That’s all disappearing now though. It’s tough enough for a core skateshop to make enough to pay the rent, let alone sponsor pros.

If I’m not mistaken there’s a golden rule that all these corporate shops are breaking. The same brands should not be sold within 5 miles of each other. It seems like this rule is a total fluke in today’s day and age when all everyone cares about is the all-might dollar. Whatever happened to exclusive and staying ‘core’?

To all of you skateboarders out there please don’t forget where we came from, the core skateshop. There’s nothing like the feeling of going to a pure skateboard shop run by real skateboarders. I can’t fully explain the feeling of being in a core shop, it truly feels like you are at your second home. Please support your local skateshop. If you have one in your area and they are still in business help them keep it that way. They are a dieing breed, a species on the endangered list if you would like to think of it that way.

Posted in Skateboarding | 1 Comment »

Three Boards, One Ultimate Boarder

Thursday, February 28th, 2008

The concept being used in the Ultimate Boarder competition is a unique one, but will it excite and attract the full attention of the action sports industry as it has set out to do? Judging by the caliber of athletes they’ve already attracted and a prize purse of $50,000, they just might.

Opening its field to both amateur and professional athletes, the Ultimate Boarder, held from April 13-19, gives unknown riders a chance to shine alongside the pros and compete for the first-ever Ultimate Boarder championship and a first place prize of $30,000. At the completion of each event competitors will be ranked 1st through 50th place. The contestant who consistently places the highest in all three sports and has the lowest number of ranking points overall will be crowned the Ultimate Boarder. Athletes must compete in all three sports in order to be included in the final event results and be eligible for the prize purse.

The snowboarding portion of the event will be held at Squaw Valley, the surfing will be done at “C” Street in Ventura, and they will wrap it up with skateboarding and the awards ceremony at the Ventura County Fairgrounds.

I’ve seen variations of this format attempted before, but obviously none that have made enough noise to stick around. Take a look at some of the contestants who have already thrown their names in the hat to be the first Ultimate Boarder and you’ll see why this is a contest you’ll want to keep your eyes on. Omar Hassan, Andy Finch, John John Florence, Todd Richards, Tosh Townend, and many more have already confirmed their attendance at the competition. Follow that line-up with judges like Jim Rippey, Shaun Thomson, and Christian Hosoi, and the Ultimate Boarder has sufficient star-power to become a mainstay in the action sports industry.

With athletes more than likely dominating in their specific sport, it’s going to come down to whoever has polished their game enough in the other two categories. We all know what John John can do on a surfboard, but how will he fare on the mountain? Being from Hawaii I can’t imagine he gets too much time on the snow. This is where a contest of this nature will really get interesting.

No word yet on if Shaun White has decided to enter. If the ‘flying-tomato’ does decide that he’s in, the Ultimate Boarder may as well have a check already printed up with his name on it.

Posted in Skateboarding, Snow, Surfing | No Comments »

Arbor’s New Kelly Slater Signature Skateboards

Friday, August 3rd, 2007

Arbor Sports has teamed up with Kelly Slater to release a signature series of skateboards called the “Slater Series”. This marks two firsts for Arbor: One, this is the first ever signature skate series from Arbor. Two, this is also Arbor’s first ever composite design, which uses a unique blend of environmentally friendly materials, surf heritage, and performance oriented construction.

Arbor Kelly Slater Skateboard

Graphics for the boards are heavily influenced by Slater’s passions for surfing, music, travel, and friends. There are also design features that hint towards Kelly’s eight world championship titles. The boards are 38″ long and 8.75″ wide, a shape that’s loosely based on the mini-guns that Slater surfs at Pipe.

Although longboard skateboarding and surfing have some similar traits and this collaboration is likely to be a good one because of that, I don’t think it’s necessarily a great move when athletes cross promote into sports they aren’t heavily involved in. That would be like Tiger Woods releasing a signature series of tennis rackets. So what’s next; a series of Kelly Slater snowboards or wakesurfing boards?

Arbor says that these boards were recently released but I was unable to find any information about the skates on their website. Why I am not surprised?

Arborkelly slater

Posted in Brands, Skateboarding | 2 Comments »

Follow the RVCA Skate Team Across Canada

Friday, July 13th, 2007

The RVCA skate team is touring across Canada this summer on snowmobiles and dog sleds. They’ll also be camping in igloos and hunting seals. The tour kicked off today in Vancouver and ends in Quebec on July 22nd. I guess that means its only a week long tour and not the whole summer, bleh.

You can follow the team on their blog where they’ll be making daily updates.

By the way RVCA: What’s up with the blogspot blog in an iFrame? And where are the RSS feeds? That’s a rant for another day and another post though.


Posted in Brands, Skateboarding | No Comments »

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