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Wednesday with Wes: Switch Varial Heelflips w/ Wes Lembo

Tighten up your man bun and get your learn on with Wes and his infamous Switch Varial Heelflip.

2014 Street League Atlanta Pro Demo at Kennesaw Skatepark

This past Saturday, September 13th, 2014, the Kennesaw Skatepark hosted its very first Street League event.  Street League was kind enough to send out 4 of their top Pro’s, including Paul Rodriguez, Ishod Wair, Tom Asta and Chaz Ortiz, to come and put on a demo for the local crowd.  Oh, and our boy Justin Brock was out there having fun too! Watching these guys on TV is one thing, but witnessing their talent in person is jaw-dropping.  Big thanks to Street League, Cricket Wireless and the Kennesaw Skatepark for making this all happen!  Check out some photos and our recap video filmed by Matt Mazza.

Iconic Atlanta Video Parts

Atlanta Traffic

Atlanta

Watching skate videos is a part of every skateboarder’s life.  Everyone has a taste of their own and not everyone can agree on which video is the best.  One thing is for certain though, local videos definitely hold a little more value than your average pro video.  Although the quality of the skating within the video may not always be as good, there is always something special about watching video parts of those older guys you see around town all the time at all the spots you love to skate.  Skate videos have been around for a long time.  In an effort to bring you a broader timeline of epic Atlanta video parts much larger than my own spectrum, I had to reach out to some of the more seasoned veterans in the game.  These first two are not technically local videos, but they were among the first few times Atlanta skateboarders had big time video parts.

1. Andy Howell in New Deal’s 1281 (1991) – This part came out when I was still wearing diapers and sucking on my thumb, but to others a little older than me it changed everything…

“The main one for me was Andy Howell in 1281.  I had read his Transworld pro spotlight about a hundred times and my pen pal buddy from up here told me to check out the New Deal 1281 vid when I could and said there was tons of Atlanta footage in Andy’s part. I still watch that part today. It was the first time, being from Jones County, at 13 years old that I “had” to go skate in Atlanta somehow… Skating was starting to transition at that time. It was very rough filmed and by looking at it today, kinda sloppy skating. But the song, his clothes, the switch and nollie shit he was doing was beyond what anyone else did. It wasn’t the clear day school yard that Vallely and Templeton skated. It looked and seemed a lot cooler than the other footage in that video. Plus, it was “real”. Like, I knew where Atlanta was. F*****g 2 hours up the freeway. California looked awesome, but it may as well said Russia. It wasn’t feasible. It seemed like story land stuff.” – Jeremiah Babb of Bender Hardware

 

2. Daniel Powell in Underworld Element’s SkyPager (1993) – This Daniel Powell part was also a bit before my time, but was suggested to me by a couple different sources for really putting Atlanta on the map.  With innovative tricks, great style, and a serious eye-opener at the SunTrust building right off Peachtree Street how could anyone deny the awesomeness of this part?  Turn the volume up and feel the 90’s.

 

3. Chris Head in Raped Inc.’s Conspiracy (1998) – In the 5 year gap between the previous part and this awesome Chris Head part, the quality of videos changed quite a bit.  People really began to figure out how they wanted skateboarding to look and how it should be filmed.  I asked Matt Creasy, a local skateboarder/filmmaker, what his favorite Atlanta parts are and he answered with this… “Chris Head or Jeremiah Babb in the last Raped video.  That was the first time I saw people from Atlanta on par with the rest of skateboarding.”

 

4. Jeremiah Babb and Graham Bickerstaff in Ryan Dearth’s Dirty South (1999-2000) – These are my two personal favorite Atlanta skateboarders.  I was introduced to skating a year or two after this video had come out.  I remember seeing this video for the first time and having the hardest time grasping the concept that not only were these dudes killing it so hard, but they were skating spots that I had access to.  It brought to mind the idea that, “If they can do it, so can we.”  It was my first window into what Atlanta skating was all about.  Good skating, good times with no room for bullshit.  Graham 360 flipped over the rail at BellSouth, who does that!?

 

5. Mike Devine in Ruin Skateshop’s Nouveau (2004) – I grew up watching skate videos like Zero’s Dying To Live, Flip Sorry and many other typical hammer-style videos of the early 2000’s, so when Ruin Skateshop’s video Nouveau came out I was blown away.  The first reason being that it was another amazing local video featuring guys I had become friends with over the years and the second reason being that it was the first time I realized that there were other styles of skating that appealed to me rather than just your average stair and handrail skating.  Mike Devine has a really clean and unique style that is very pleasing to the eye.  This part along with the whole video is worth a gander.

 

6. Justin Brock and David Clark in Matt Swinsky’s Southern Comfort (2007) –  These parts, to me, are truly amazing, not only for the skating, but this was the first time I got to see first hand in person what it really takes to film a gnarly video part.  My friends and I were lucky enough to be around for quite a bit of this video, on the session or at the party afterwards.  We were the younger kids trying to be cool like those older dudes, and this one set the bar pretty high for us.  Justin is a skateboarder’s skateboarder, and David skates Atlanta like we all wish we could.  They both definitely left their mark on a lot of Atlanta spots with this one.

 

Honorable Mentions:

Atlanta Metrospective Logic Issue 01 (1999)

Stormy Pruett in Dog Shit

Phil Kent and Graham Bickerstaff in Rusty Trombone

Chris Head and Mike Devine in Rusty Trombone

Mike Summers and John Sheffield in Rusty Trombone

James Coleman in Ruin’s Nouveau

Kevin Radley in VHS Tape

David Clark for Bender Hardware

I am almost positive I missed a couple gems, so feel free to let me know in the comments below…

 

Adidas Skate Copa Southeast Regionals

Have you ever been to a skateboard contest hosted by Adidas and The Boardr?  I hadn’t either until last weekend.  If you ever get the chance, I would advise you to go.  The Adidas Skate Copa Southeast Regional contest was held at the Kennesaw skatepark on Saturday, May 31st.  Skate Copa is a regional shop versus shop contest, where a four man team from each of the 17 invited shops get a 5 minute jam style run to showcase their bag of tricks in front of a panel of 3 judges.  The shops team members are scored individually, and the top 3 scores from the team are factored in to the shops overall score.  From there, the top 8 shops move on to the semi-finals where they battle head to head in a single elimination bracket format.  The winning shop gets an all expense paid trip to Los Angeles for the Skate Copa finals, where they will battle it out against the other 4 regional champions at The Berrics.

 

We could not have been more stoked to be invited to join in on the fun and get a chance to skate with and against some of the best skateboarders in the whole southeast.  We chose Zeke, Travis, CatNip and Josh to represent us and hopefully bring home the bacon.  With forecasts calling for rain that Saturday, the original start time of the contest being 12 noon was bumped up to 10:30 in the morning.  Much to our dismay, we were selected to skate the first heat starting promptly at 10:30.  No complaints though, because we do have a home field advantage being that the Kennesaw skatepark is right in our backyard.  Nevertheless, the boys all showed up on time and ready to rip.  Master of ceremonies and OG east coast ripper Tim O’Connor kicked it all off and kept the day rolling smoothly.

Our first jam at 10:30 was awesome.  I have never seen those losers skate a contest so well.  Josh came in swingin’ skating the big rail, CatNip was switch 360 flippin’ all over the place, Zeke was on fire as usual and Travis was soothing the eyes with style for days.  5 minutes of carnage later and we had just set the bar for the other 16 teams who had yet to go.  Zeke even managed to do a front crook nollie flip out first try in the heat, which he has only done one other time in his whole life.  The crowd was officially awake now and Tim O’Connor had plenty of hilarious jokes ready for Zeke, calling him “the incredible flesh toothpick” and other accurately assessed adjectives.

After all 17 shops had taken their qualifying runs, Ambush sat in 3rd place.  This meant we were moving on to the semi finals and we were stoked.  Once in the semi-finals, it became an endurance battle.  The temperature was high and there was no shade in sight.  The water was flowing, but it wasn’t enough to keep the exhaustion away.  The better you skated the more you advanced, and the more you advanced the more you had to skate without getting a whole lot of breaks in between.  Fatigue was setting in for every team and it showed in everyone’s skating.  The teams that made it to the top two spots, Skatepark of Tampa and PLUS skateshop, were maniacs and were able to keep skating under such harsh conditions.

Our dudes skated hard and killed it all day, but the sun and its heat had worn them down.  We ended the day in 4th place.  4th place out of 17 of the best shops in the southeast isn’t half bad if you ask me.  The day went on though.  It was a close call, but ultimately it was Skatepark Of Tampa that took the crown.  A major shoutout is owed to PLUS Skateshop and Hazard County for ripping the entire day and keeping us on our toes.

To top off an amazing day of skating, Adidas was giving away shoes like candy.  Everyone had three stripes on by the end of the day.  After the contest everyone headed to a free pizza and free beer after party that was just what the doctor ordered after a long day in the sun.  This was a time for everyone who competed to hang out under the brotherly umbrella of skateboarding and all its awesomeness.  Our bellies were full, our ability to operate motor vehicles had been impaired and Adidas Skate Copa was officially a wrap.  A MAJOR thank you is in store for all the guys at Adidas and all the homies from The Boardr for making a kickass event.  Cheers!

 

For official results check out The Boardr’s results page.

 

Mitch Shutters Full Part

Team rider Mitchell Shutters put together a sick part for your viewing pleasure.  The last rail is no joke!

The 2014 Wakeskate Tour Suwannee Pro Recap Video

The level of riding on The Wakeskate Tour has d*mn near gotten out of hand. Straight up, these guys are go for the gusto right out of the gate as if the qualifying round is simply a massive final before a smaller final.

We’re pumped to see Ambush riders Josh Zentmeyer, Ben Horan, and our good friends Austin & Travis Pastura at the forefront shaking things up. Press play and watch this incredible recap video put together by Rockstar. Oh yeah, and Benni…that frontside heelflip caused an earthquake up here at the shop.

BOOM!

 

Trick Tip : Frontside 5-0 on Transition with Skyler Clark

Trick Tip : Backside Tailslides with Jordan Smith at Kennesaw Skatepark

Learn backside tailslides with ambush team rider Jordan Smith.

Trick Tip : Impossibles with Zeke Logan at Kennesaw Skatepark

Get the inside scoop on Impossibles with Ambush team rider Zeke Logan.

On the Red Couch with Jordan Smith, Mitch Shutters, and Matt Mazza

Take a look inside the beautiful mind of Matt Mazza

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