Half The Hills All the Skills, Toronto Scene Part 10
| No Comment
THE TORONTO LONGBOARDING COMMUNITY — FINAL THOUGHTS
Ponyta: “The magic of the Toronto longboarding community is its inclusive, populist attitude, which transcends ability, age, race and gender. Everyone is welcome to the party! The camaraderie and stoke are both really strong. It’s not unusual for longboarders to stop each other on the street and inform one another of events to attend and websites to visit.” Adam: “I see it getting a little bit easier for us. When we started there wasn’t that older generation to show us how things were done. [But now] we’ve got slide schools. … We flow gear to the kids. We take them out to races. In fact, speaking of kids, we’ve got 9-year-olds making the pros sweat.
“I want to take a back seat and go skate. It’s really stressful … I just want to enjoy it. The end goal is to be a part of skateboarding. It is really so much fun. Sharing good times rather than worrying about racing. It’s more about hanging out and growing the sport.” Chris: At the Board Meeting, there were so many little kids. These folks will determine the next steps. I see a little less emphasis on competition and more accent on building the community.
Skateboarding is so open-ended – you can do whatever you’d like and that really drives the whole scene. I am trying to get away from labels. I just want to keep skating. Jonathan: “We also used to ride with this man from Mexico named Raphael, born with no arms or legs, and instead of using a wheelchair he used a skateboard to get around. We gave him a longboard and Ben used to pull him from garage to garage, and to this day I have never met someone with more stoke in my whole life. He had more challenges than anyone else on the team, yet he was the most positive person I’ve ever met. He would bomb those garages fearlessly with the largest smile on his face. That’s the old-school vibe I will never forget. “It’s crazy to think how far this has all come and how lucky I am to be able to document the community through photo and film. There’s nothing more amazing than someone telling you they came out to Board Meeting because they saw your photo on the wall. There have been so many people over the years who’ve made this all possible, and I am grateful to have been a part of the community from the beginning.”
Written by Michael Brooke