Ollie in front of Supreme by Max Wheeler. No, a different Supreme. Photo by Bobby Murphy.
The scope of skateboard travel got way smaller this past year-and-a-half. Connecticut — that lil’ big state that is basically just outside The Bronx — posed an interesting case study. Following the thaw-out from the most depressing winter of our lifetimes, our first trip out of New York was to CT. We came armed with inspiration from “Your Big Cheesecake,” a March 2021 Connecticut video that was blurbed about on here in the winter, and originally found on Skate Jawn. In it, you find a vast network of cutty, underseen spots sitting in small cities that are all a shorter drive away than Philadelphia. It wasn’t until just recently that our brains were forced to understand that maybe there was some skateboard escape nearby that wasn’t one we have been to dozens of times before. The rewatchability of “Your Big Cheesecake” definitely helped hammer that point home.
There are tried-and-true tales of crust synonymous with New Jersey, Philly, Ohio and the greater midwest — but for some reason, as the eastern seaboard begins transitioning into seafood shacks and Ivy League schools, a lot of that narrative gets lost, despite the fact that spots in places like Connecticut are every bit as rugged as those of its crustaceous neighbors. “Your Big Cheesecake” is a 14-minute video out of Connecticut by Dave Sullivan that is well-worth your time, and full of spots that you haven’t grown tired of seeing ♥ It really ramps up a few octaves at the end …that nollie at Trinity in particular, wow.
Manuel Schenck has a new all-Parisian edit for Supreme to commemorate their upcoming Nike SB Air Force 2. Features Nik Stain (!!!), Vince, Sage, Sean, K.B., Kyron Davis and Koston returning to gap skating at my favorite spot in the world.
“But even in his most powerful Diamond t-shirt, Chaz Ortiz can’t carry 2.7 million souls on his back alone.” Boil the Ocean reviews Realm, the latest video from Chicago’s Deep Dish crew, which came out last month.
Tennyson Corporation put together every appearance Rick Howard and Mike Carroll ever had in an issue of 411to a four-song mega mix.
C.J. Keossaian, Sean Dahlberg, Hugo Boserup, Andrew Wilson, Nik Stain and John Choi traveled to the Westerly and Groton skateparks in Connecticut, and came back with “Jet Fueled Hog.” We did that once. Good times.
Frontside 5050 to nosemanual is maybe the last trick anyone expected to see on Pyramid Ledges from that period where the one side was unknobbed.
It is no secret that we spend an inordinate amount of time in caged in, flat spaces. And it is no secret — as much as we may try to glamorize it — that it gets old after a while. With open road season in the northeast coming to a close, we hit I-95 one last time this fall. Except rather than going to surefire crutches like Eggs or Pulaski, we aimed for something a little different, and a little less…flat. We loaded up the three or five people in the crew adequately versed in skating transition for an atypical QS journey. We went to concrete skateparks, and ended up leaving something permanent behind us in the end (more on that later.)
The concrete skatepark is a relatively new phenomenon in New York. Sure, Owl’s Head has been there for a decade-and-a-half, but the recent surge in parks popping up everywhere is only ~five years old. It also came after we spent much of the 2000s languishing in pre-fab purgatory. Even then, if you heard some of the stories from people tasked with negotiating the skaters’ side in building a park, you’d want to strangle yourself with the red tape. We have one of the three largest city economies in the world; the level of bureaucracy that comes with each one we’re fortunate enough to have is unparalleled. Hopefully, the stadium-lit volleyball courts out on Tribeca piers have an easier time getting built…
New England embraced outdoor and public concrete parks long before we did. That’s mostly due to two people: Sloppy Sam, who founded Breaking Ground Skateparks, and Jeff Paprocki, who now owns Paprocki Concrete & Masonry. Both of them navigated the laws and public works departments that vary between every New England town to create much of the vast network of parks that exists up there today. Once you stop by Frank Pepe’s in New Haven and make it into the eastern half of Connecticut, it’s possible to spend the day hitting three or four unique parks, all thanks to these dudes. They aren’t “D.I.Y.” creations in the grey understanding that we have of that phrase, but it’s obvious they wouldn’t exist without the saintly proactive efforts of a few individuals. “It’s all about knowing the right person to talk to.” And also having the right crew around you.
The Ride Channel was nice enough to run Backstreet Atlas, the mini doc about two guys skating from Boston to New York, on their YouTube page. You might remember that we interviewed Adam and Zach about their journey back in April.
Living in New York, it’s easy to fall into the trap of assuming the entire world revolves around you. (At least until a hurricane comes through and you realize you’re just on an island with expensive coffee in a corner of the Atlantic Ocean…) People barely consider nearby cities outside of Philadelphia, Boston, D.C. and maybe Baltimore, but the northeast is a pretty big place. They were able to condense their two hundred-mile / two-week trip into a twenty-minute video, and while it doesn’t even have a big flip in it (!!!), it’s a fun video that does a great job of getting you hyped to explore a bit further than your own backyard, or just to go skate in general.
Solid work from all those involved. Have a good weekend.