July 22nd2009 eS footwear came to Austintown/Youngstown, OH on their national leg of the eS Game of Skate tour. The eS Game of Skate was originally created in 2003 and has since expanded. This is the fourth year in a row that the tour has had an official event in Ohio. The years and places are as follows:
A game of S.K.A.T.E. is similar to the game of H.O.R.S.E. in basketball, someone makes a shot(or trick), the other person has to do it and if they miss, they get a letter. For those of you already familiar with the game here are some rules that may differ from your own or are contrary to your belief:
No landing tricks one-footed or cross-legged(the guy in charge said it just looks bad).
A trick must be popped(which means no sliding your big spins and no pivots on the cabs).
A shifty is an ollie, doing a shifty with a flip gets you nowhere, your opponent only has to do what you did minus the shifty.
Lastly, in contradiction to the berrics, you do not get two tries on the last letter.
This last rule is most likely the reason why the matches went so quickly.
That is the background information, now to the day…
When I arrived at the event there was a good number of people out in the parking lot either unloading cars or warming up for the contest and a few eS people were running to and from the van getting different equipment. It was already muggy outside but stepping into the park was a similar experience to that of taking a hike through a swamp. Everything was already set up(being a little after 3pm by the time I got there, sign up started at 3) and the eS workers were either signing people up or playing games of skate with people.
As I was waiting for the event to start I spotted a skater I had seen at the 1031 demo in Willoughby so I asked to get his picture for the site and he obliged(keep reading for more about him a little bit later). After that I went out and found a guy wearing an etnies shirt who had been talking with a few of the eS people and I assumed(seeing as etnies and eS are owned by the same person) that he would know who was in charge. I introduced myself and he pointed out who I needed to talk to and walked me over but as we were waiting the clock struck 4 and the event started. The guy I was supposed to meet then took the microphone and started the event by giving a little bit of background as I did. The event was run four matches at a time and each match was presided by a scorekeeper who kept track of who had what letter and enforced rules if necessary.
I started making my rounds, taking pictures of the event and talking to a few people who were skating and warming up. As I was doing so, I saw the skater I mentioned earlier and he called me over. He asked me what my site was called and what it was about and we introduced ourselves to each other. His name is Mike Nypaver(from Ohio) and you may remember him from the 1031 post where he had a few photos including a 50-50 on the plaza sign. Mike and I talked for a bit about the demo, the article about the demo in thrasher and he mentioned some areas in Ohio I should check out such as Athens which brought up the subject of Brewce Martin’s injury(Get better!). We also talked about other skate parks such as Evolution, Big Happy’s (dead park) and the Chenga parks. For more on Mike Nypaver check out the 1031 post. Thanks for taking the time to talk to me Mike. I hope you check out the site and send me an e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mike and I then split ways, he went to skate and I went over to the guy running the event and introduced myself and told him about what I was doing. We talked for a few minutes and he was cool and willing to talk despite all he had to do already and he told me to keep in touch so I plan to do so. Thanks for taking the time out of your duties to hear me out, it is appreciated(send me an e-mail so we can keep in touch it is in the paragraph above). During the later part of the event (around 5:15-5:30) I went over to the stairs to take some photos and videos of the unofficial contest going on. Plenty of good tricks were being tried and one of the people from eS had a noseslide down the ledge on lock and eventually was trying a noseslide shove-it out. He couldn’t ride away but he was close plenty of times so I say count it. My computer is refusing to read memory cards at the moment so the video will have to be uploaded, edited, and posted later. The guy skating the stairs from eS was real cool and I’d like to send a thanks his way for talking with me as well.
While over at the stairs, the finals were getting ready to begin so I headed over there before everyone was called over so I could write down names and get a decent spot. The finals were between John Tod(who had landed in 3rdplace the day before in Michigan), Chris McHugh, and Doug Mares. The game was almost four minutes long and my video ran out of memory when the final trick was set, a backside 360 kickflip, which was the winning trick. Check the video but don’t scroll too far if you don’t want to know who won ahead of time. Note: the video for the game was filmed with a different camera than the video mentioned in the last paragraph.
Chris McHugh won, followed by Doug Mares in 2nd and John Tod in 3rd for the second day in a row. You really can’t be mad at that.
The winner gets an all expense paid trip to California to compete in the final at the etnies park which is right beside the offices for Sole Technology(the parent company of eS and etnies). Send your good luck wishes to Chris McHugh since he is representing our state by being the winner of our local event. Congratulations to the top 3 and thanks goes out to eS, Transworld, and Skull Candy for sponsoring the tour and coming out to Ohio every year. Thanks to Stomping Grounds for hosting the event in the park and thanks to everyone who I talked to, feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com. It would be good to hear from all of you.