The Need For Speed downhill reunion at The California Surf Museum(link) was nothing short of incredible. OG skaters reunited with old friends, reminisced to their race days and looked back at the boards they used to ride.
The Downhill Skateboarding Reunion, held at The California Surf Museum in Huntington Beach, Ca was one very memorable night for all who attended and it was witnessed by only a couple hundred people.
Legends of skating and people who helped start it all were in attendance along with some legendary surfers. Basically the event was a meet and greet and it was a showcase for their newest display called A Need For Speed. It was a tribute to downhill skateboard racing and there was a whole section dedicated to Signal Hill, which is where the first sanctioned race ever was held.
Hello fellow adrenaline junkies, my name is Stephen. I am 30 years young, and I have been skating for about 25. My first board was a Vision Gator with the neon tail guard and rails, most of you probably weren’t even born yet.
After years of skating street, a lady named Cathy White gave me my first longboard. You may have heard of her son, Shaun. The board was a Sector 9 Luke Nosewalker. When she handed me the board she said, “promise me you won’t be going down any hills on this, that’s why I’m giving it to you. I don’t want Shaun to kill himself.” Naturally, I said I wouldn’t. At the time, I had no intention of doing downhill… at the time.
Eventually I ran into a kid at school with a S9 mini cruiser that wanted to skate with me. Every time we would skate he would say,”let’s go bomb some hills dude!’ So we did… and then I knew that I had found my new hobby.
Fast forward to June 28th… I was skating with my friend, Doron, in downtown Long Beach. We frequent some garages in the area that are 7 floors with one lane spirals that are super fun. After a few runs in the garage, we decided to move on because there were a lot of cars. We made our way to the lighthouse to wait out the traffic. While Doron talked to a guy we met at the top of the hill, I went down for my first run. The hill is slow, maybe 25 if you get a good push. At the bottom I made the decision to roll into the grass to slow down… wrong decision. My front wheels hit a hole, and my board stopped. I probably would have been fine, but my foot stop pulled my front foot out from under me. My shoulder dug into the ground and I heard a snap. I knew what it was.
My clavicle was obviously broken and almost coming through the skin. So I walked back up the hill to get Doron.
“Hey man…hey… dude… we like, gotta roll to the E.R.” I said.
“I am pretty sure this bone isn’t supposed to be poking this way,” I said as I dropped my board and put my foot on it.
“What are you doing?! You can’t skate back like that!’ Doron said.
But it was too late, I was already headed back down the hill. The car was about 2 miles away, but we were in a spot that is hard to get to with a car. As I skated back i could hear Doron’s wheels hitting the cracks behind me. As he skated next to me he said, “dude, is it okay that I’m filming this?’ “Of course,” I said. Why not? I’d be filming your ass if you fell, i thought. When we got to the road, I stopped skating and told him to get the car.
Doron did about 55mph to whole way to the ER. Screaming around corners in his little Fiat, he seemed more freaked out than I was. I appreciated the gesture so much that I could not tell him how much he was hurting me by driving that way.
In the ER I didn’t get anything for pain, they only gave me some anti-inflammatory medicine. A few hours later, the doctor came in with my X-rays. Before I tell you what he said, take a look at it.
“Here is a sling, it will set itself,” the doctor said.
“Hahaha, that is super funny,” I said, “you are joking, right?’
“No, it is just a clavicle. These things heal themselves.”
“Okay, but I’m pretty sure I need surgery.”
There it was, I had a sling and 12 vicodin. The next morning, I drove myself back to the hospital to see a real doctor. When I walked into the room he had my x-ray on the screen and he was shaking his head.
“I guess I don’t have to tell you that you need surgery,” he said.
I had seen this doctor before, you see, I’m no stranger to injury. About 18% of my body is covered in burn scars. That is another story all together.
So I spent a week with my bones completely separated, and it was hell. I had a titanium plate and six screws put in, and healing has been going pretty well.
This bone is no joke though, not an injury I would want to go through again. I skated 25 years without breaking a bone, but when I finally did it; I did it right. I have no feeling in my entire left shoulder, and you can see the plate sticking up through my skin. The doctors said it would be 3 months before I can pick my daughter up, but I don’t listen. I was lifting her the day after surgery. I know I shouldn’t be, but come on… I’m a single dad, what am I supposed to do?
Everyone has seen the simple sticks with wheels attached to the bottom that people use to “paddle” or push their skateboards down the street. The Von Bone Street Paddle is that but on steroids. “This isn’t your mother’s broomstick,” said Hurricane Von Bone (inventor/creator/mastermind) as he handed me a street paddle.
“I was riding my bike one day and I saw a guy trying to push himself with a bamboo pole and he just didn’t look happy. I did that with a broomstick when I was 12, and it just didn’t really work out for me. I was riding my bike down by the beach, and all of a sudden this light bulb came on and then I created the Von Bone street paddle,” said Hurricane.
The street paddle is exactly what the name implies. It’s basically a stand up paddle board for the streets. As I paddled down the street following Hurricane, I even noticed he was standing on the board the same way you would with a stand up paddle board. His feet side by side, in the middle of the board, pointing straight ahead, switching side to side with the paddle.
“That’s probably part of it, you know. The standup paddle boarding thing is so big right now, and you wouldn’t believe how many people are afraid of the water. I mean, they’re scared to fall on a skateboard too but they’re even more afraid of the water,” said Hurricane.
As I paddled down the street, I noticed it was a great upper body workout as well. I have tried the other sticks people use for pushing before and this is not really comparable to them. The Von Bone Street Paddle uses torque powered by the rider to spring him or herself forward.
“With the way it’s designed, no matter how you grab it when your switching hands and hitting the ground with it you’re at the right angle. The grabbing handle’s round and the traction ball’s round so no matter how you hold it you got the right angle” said Hurricane.
The street paddles come with two different pounds of torque, the 60 lb version and the 80 lb which are suitable for the majority of riders. There is version however a lighter resistance model and a heavier resistance model being designed to better accommodate riders of all abilities and strength.
For the short time I was at the booth I saw lots of people excited about the product and many people wanted to try it. Their booth was packed the whole time I was there.
“We’re getting people who have never even skated before that are looking at this going, ‘you know, I think I could do that.’ I’m getting moms and grandmothers trying it. They may not take up the sport but they’re thrilled with it, and you wouldn’t get them to walk into your average skate shop and try a board out. Something about our product makes it appealing to the general population, not just the skate kids.”
The Von Bone Street Paddle is an awesome invention that creates a way for people anywhere at anytime to go outside their house and start paddling away. The stick is light enough to easily carry around and it just further shows the relationship between skateboarding and surfing. They go hand and hand and this brings the concept of stand up paddle boarding to the land. It’s only natural that this thing was built and designed in Huntington Beach, aka Surf City USA, in the beautiful state of California. – Leecifer
Talega, a popular skate spot with every local company and their moms throwing slide jams and races there so walking up the hill was a familiar scene. Skaters sliding their way jamming down the hill and spectators hanging out at the hairpin left where most of the crashing takes place.
With a small ramp set up and a group of skaters and many familiar faces a good time was to be had. Pizza was delivered to the hill ordered and consumed by the Laguna kids and there were people from L.A all the way to San Diego that drove out to attend the event.
For those of you unfamiliar with Talega it is a pretty gnarly hill not to ridden unless you know how to slide or a ready to learn. The bottom half of the road consists of 3 big hairpins and a fun lefty at the beginning. Skaters usually start just above these hairpins. The straightaways to them is steep forcing you to have to drift each one and the pavement is super buttery making it a great hill for free riding.
A good group of shredders showed up to the event and lots of skin was left at the hill.
Here’s another one for all of you kids who talk shit on fixed gear biking and think it is for think for yourself, witty hipster kids take a moment to chew on this video and rethink your take on fixed gear bikes. Just because there are hipsters who ride fixed gear bikes doesn’t mean that fixed gear bikers are all hipsters. Fuck that shit. Most fixed gear bikers are a whole new level of skill and gnar. Anyone who could do half the shit JBall does in this video on a regular bike would impress me and being on a fixed gear bike only makes it 10 times harder. There are dudes beasting out climbing long mountain roads on fixed gear bikes now and dudes charging down the streets of San Francisco on these things.
Sometimes we don’t appreciate the things we don’t understand and if you haven’t found an appreciation for it go out and try to ride one. You might find this is not your average bike ride so if you were one of those kids that thought all fixed gear bikers were hipsters and what not it’s time for you to think again. – Leecifer
Saturday June, 9, 2012. Santa Ana, Ca The OC Roller Girls (OCRG) held the first banked track match in their new home Santa Ana. The Orange Whips beat the Traffic Jammers in a close bout that stayed exciting until the end with the final score being 155 (Orange Whips) – 145 (Traffic Jammers).
This was our first time at a banked track event and it was 10 times the excitement of their flat track matches. The action was fast paced and bigger hits.
The bout (game) consists of 2 periods each one being 30 minutes and an unlimited number of jams can be played in that time period. A jam is 1 minute unless the lead jammer calls it off early by putting her hands on her hips.
Their are up to 5 players from each team on the rink. One jammer (star on helmet), one Pivot (stripe on helmet) and 3 blockers.
Jammers score points by passing members of the opposing team.
Penalties can be accrued through illegal hits which inlclude using elbows, tripping, blocking from behind and holding.
(Adams Raceway, Riverside, CA) ATTENTION ALL DRIFT CAR RACERS. Anyone interested in entering this event contact firstname.lastname@example.org . The entry fee is $150 and you will also receive 25 tickets to sell to the event of which you will keep the profit. They are also looking for more sponsors for the event. For a low price of $300 you will have your name on the fliers and you will get a 10×10 booth to represent your products and your brand. For everyone else needing tickets they will be sold at the gate for $15 a ticket or you can find out more info on ticket sales by clicking here. Also be sure to check out www.warfest.com for future events.
Video Edited and shot by: Tye Donnelly
Each SDDRL (San Diego Downhill Racing League) is a story of it’s own and this one was a story of legends. I mean both both Dave and John Rogers were there, Dave Hackett, Chris Yandall, Lynn Kraemer just to name a few. The raddest part of the whole thing was seeing Jay Adam’s show up. Jay Adams is the first skateboarder ever. The original. He was from before the dogtown era and helped pioneer skateboarding.
The hill was mellow and fun with speeds topping off around 40 and some good racing. Live music was being played on the drums and guitars and everyone chowed down on some burgers. All in all it was a totally rad and awesome time. An SDDRL to remember. Another chapter in the book.
Check out the wheel review our homie’s from ThreeRing Longboard’s put together. These dudes live in Salt Lake City, Utah and they have a pretty cool thing going on. Also look for events in your area from these guys. They throw some super rad events. Check out the video of the event they threw in Las Vegas with this link…Three Ring Longboards Vegas Showdown
The freebord pro team talks to this police officer who explains the laws of the city for skateboarding and tells about his fame from other skate videos. Photo by: Leecifer
You’re skating your favorite hill when “Johnny Law” rolls up on you. It turns out someone called reporting skateboarders on “their” hill. After a lecture explaining the laws (which vary from city to city) you are issued a ticket for being a pedestrian in the roadway.
“Here’s your lift ticket,” says the police officer. Your day which was going good so far just got expensive. All the fun you were having is drowned and a damper is thrown on your day.
This ticket was issued on a road with no sidewalks, no bike lane and cyclists riding up and down the road. No one is worried about the cyclists. They are free to roam and do their thing while you are treated like a criminal. Skateboarders are unfairly singled out although a skateboard can be used for transportation as well as recreation while bicycles are used for mostly recreation.
Skateboarding has been around since the 1950′s. As the sport began to increase in popularity, its sub culture grew and law enforcement looked at these kids as punks and criminals.
Police officers, security guards and concerned citizens are constantly harassing skaters. A fun run down a hill shouldn’t turn into a lecture about the danger of the sport and how many people are killed participating in it nor should it become an issue about who owns the street. The amount of cyclists killed every year is far greater than the number of skateboarders.
A stereotype about skaters is that they run around spray-painting everything and destroying stuff, breaking into places and stealing. Sure there are criminals and punks who skateboard, but this doesn’t mean that all skateboarders fall under this category.
“Stop skating immediately” bellowed the police helicopter flying above Michael Melone (left) and Jordan Hessler (right). Photo By: Leecifer
It is a sport that requires a great deal of balance and athleticism. Most people will have a hard time standing on the board let alone riding it down hills and flipping it in controlled spins through the air.
Southern California has a thriving multimillion dollar action sports industry, yet people still want skateboarding banned in their cities. They want the streets to themselves for the few times they drive up and down each day.
We view the world differently than most people. Each city is its own playground.
“Go home” said the cop to a group of skaters ready to bomb the 50 mph rollercoaster ride. Photo by: Leecifer
Every skateboarder shares one thing in common. We have all felt the pure thrill and joy of riding around town with nothing but a piece of wood and wheels between you and the road. It is one of the best feelings in the world. The adrenaline is flowing, you can feel the wind whipping against you as your shirt flaps behind you and at that moment nothing else matters.
Skateboarding in certain areas is like being in a war zone. It is you versus everyone else. No skateboarding signs litter city streets. “You are not allowed to have fun here,” is how I read the signs. You must be ready for any situation, even the occasional pissed off parent.
The sport is rapidly growing and acceptance for it is slowly increasing. Skate parks are being built so people have designated places to go. Skateboarders are still looked at as punk kids, when in reality it is just your normal everyday person trying to enjoy their lives and the sport they choose to participate in.
What is better than a sport with no rules, where you are free to do what you want all while having fun doing it? – Leecifer
Photos by: Leecifer
“Stop skating immediately” bellowed the police helicopter flying above Michael Melone (left) and Jordan Hessler (right). Photo By: Leecifer