First, I apologize for the delay of this blog post about the LA Burton premiere but hey, I had to go to the Irvine premiere too...and then it was Saturday....then Sunday came along and I had to watch football...then Monday is just lame so I couldn't write it then. So Happy Tuesday! Here's the rundown of "The B" LA Burton Premiere at the Burton Flagship store on Melrose Avenue.
This store knows how to throw a party. Burton always goes big with their events so Thursday night (October 1) they set up a gigantic projection screen on the rooftop of the store with the Hollywood Hills as the backdrop. There was the autograph signing session in their board hall as well as a couple open bars set up for all to enjoy. The party was packed with people and that store is pretty damn huge so when it actually feels crowded you know it was a good turnout. I think the free Pink's hot dogs and popcorn maybe had something to do with that. The autograph table had seats saved for Terje Haakonsen, Jeremy Jones, Jussi Oksanen, Kevin Pearce, Mikkel Bang, Hannah Teter, Ellery Hollingsworth, and Jack Mitrani but there were tons of other riders that showed up to give their support. (I saw most of them at the after party...c'mon, priorities.)
The premiere was a success. The video was awesome - I was pleasantly surprised at what they put out this year. "The B" had so much talent to work with and the result was impressive. It showcased tons of variety and mind blowing riding. I think deep down, some people tend to criticize the big guys (ahem...Burton in particular) and hope they fail at certain things and "The B" did the exact opposite. Throwing in the only footage of Shaun White killing his own private half pipe was pretty much ridiculous (in a good way) and then Keegan Valaika in the back country? Bonkers. Maybe what was even more nuts was the actual feature they made that was shaped as the "B" with pretty much the entire team hitting something on it at the same time. Way to go, guys.
Last, I'll summarize the after party. Everyone rushed over to The Spanish Kitchen to hopefully get let in before the mass crowds started lining up. Of course, we get there and we're asked to wait outside in line but with a little persuasion...and maybe some sneakiness, we got inside to enjoy another open bar and delicious free food. Louie Vito was even on the dance floor busting a move...wait, maybe that wasn't him. Anyway, it was a good time with good vibes and good people.
Thanks Burton for yet, another awesome time.
Rumored: Drinking Coca-Cola will make you a better snowboarder.
Traces of cocaine have been found in Red Bull Cola... but know this before you go blow your wad on a flat of it: You have to drink 12,000 liters of it to possibly feel the effects.
And in other cola news... Snowboarding's Gretchen Bleiler signed with Coca-Cola... Just in time for the race to the Olympics. Not a coincidence.
Jiberish Clothing just dropped Chapter 3 of Jiberish Visual Solutions featuring Jon Brogan, Matt Walker, Adam Delorme and others. Check it out, unless you don't want to watch some of the most creative park skiing ever seen.
For Sale By Owner: One Small Action Sports Snowboard Hardgood & Softgood Brand... On Craigslist . Fo' Ril' Doh.
Phil Belanger of D-Structure and legendary ski filmmaker Eric Iberg have teamed up to create a water ramp camp in Quebec City that screams 'this ain't your Olympic coach's water ramp.' Newschoolers.com recently did an interview with Iberg to get the scoop.
Shaun White Snowboarding (the video game) announced that they are coming out with a game sequel called "World Stage"... but instead of directing you to some boring press release we'd suggest checking out this take on the matter.
Congratulations go out to pro snowboarders Ellery Hollingsworth and Lizzie Beerman for graduating Stratton Mountain School High School. Graduation ceremonies were held today, Friday, May 29th 2009 somewhere in the backwoods of Vermont.
Just for kicks we rallied together whatever snowboard industry fellow or gal that happened to be online and available for chat, or that had posted some kind of facebook status relevant to basketball, to see whose rooting for who in the National Basketball semi-finals. If you've been living under a rock and didn't know that the western and eastern semi-finals are happening right now then you should know that the four teams that have made it this far are the L.A. Lakers vs the Denver Nuggets for the western conference and the Cleveland Cavaliers vs the Orlando Magic for the eastern conference.
Here's what we found out:
Standout professional girl rider Ellery Hollingsworth: "I was rooting for the Celtics, now I guess I'm rooting for the Cavs cause LeBron is sick."
Professional Riders & O'Matic teammates J.J. Thomas and Josh Sherman are both huge Nuggets fans. "Thuggets for life." -Josh Sherman (If you haven't seen it yet, Sherman has an incredible half-court shot.)
Ashbury owner Lance Hakker hasn't taken off his borrowed Lakers Windbreaker since the series started.
Pro Canadian Rider Mercedes Nicoll thinks she's a Lakers fan since she rides in Mammoth, CA two weeks a year.
Transworld Snowboarding Video Dude Justin Gunson (who lives in Breckenridge): "Of course the Nugs. I'm not much of a basketball fan, I just gotta root for the home team."
Another Breckenridge Local and pro-rider Mike Casanova is "Too confused to know which team he wants to win... so he hopes all the teams do well."
Pro Shred Jack Mitraniavoided the question altogether. "I'm a Celts fan baby."
Pro Photographer Zach Hooper "I grew up a Lakers fan watching Magic and Kareem battle the Bird and Celtics/Jordan Bulls with my Dad while living in Newport Beach. Now I live in Aspen and see the Nuggets having a good ball team- I have been stoked that they have been playing so good. During the playoffs I have just straight up been torn. One of these two teams are going to take it. Birdman reminds me of a white Dennis Rodman. All flash."
ESPN Action Sports Snowboard Editor Tracy Anderson "Usually the Utah Jazz but since the Lakers beat out the Jazz I want the Lakers to win so that at least the Jazz lost to the best team." (Fair enough.)
Professional Snowboard Videographer Tyler Mcleod: "What are my choices?"
It has been a long, beautiful and memorable year for the Burton Global Open Series. Burton New Zealand Open, Australian Open, European Open, Canadian Open, Nissan X-Trail Asian Open and this weekend's US Open World Championships in Stratton, Vermont. So far, Kass the character and Torah from down under took top honors in the pipe Saturday, while Buass and Lago won the quarterpipe competition on Friday. The slopestyle is going on as we speak, so check back later for final cumulative results for the BGOS 09 as a whole. Another year down again!
KASS WINS FIFTH BURTON US OPEN OF CAREER, BUASS AND LAGO WIN BURTON US OPEN QUARTERPIPE
Two time Olympic silver medalist Danny Kass (Portland, OR) took to the pipe in Stratton Saturday to rally the fifth US Open win of his career. Australia's Torah Bright locked down her second win in a row to lead the women's field.
"There's something about East Coast pipe and weather like this. I hurt my shoulder last year so I'm psyched to come back to the US Open and win," Kass said. "It's incredible. I grew up on the East Coast, so I would always come here and watch my favorite riders."
"Danny getting his fifth US Open win, we're obviously proud of him as a U.S. rider. He's showing he's got what it takes and is making a push to get back to his third Olympics," U.S. Snowboarding Halfpipe Head Coach Mike Jankowski said.
Finland's Peetu Piiroinen followed Kass, finishing second, and Luke Mitrani (Mammoth Lakes, CA) was third.
In the women's competition Bright overtook Clark for the win, but the 2002 Olympic gold medalist was satisfied with the season's final event.
"It was a great day. There was a lot of really good snowboarding. Torah rode amazingly and I got to try my nine again. It was awesome," Clark said.
"Kelly was able to get up there with second place. She obviously came to win, but she can't be disappointed with a podium performance," Jankowski added.
Following Clark for the first Burton US Open podium of her career was Stratton Mountain School student and U.S. Snowboarding athlete Ellery Hollingsworth (Stratton, VT).
"For Ellery, she had a stand out performance for her first US Open podium. It was a strong field and she's really proven herself as a top notch professional at a young age," Jankowski said.
With the season's final competition wrapped athletes now turn to summer training in the lead up to 2010.
"From here we'll have some spring training and really just push things into high gear for Vancouver," Jankowski said. "We're right on track and everything is in place for more great things to happen this year."
2009 BURTON US OPEN HALFPIPE
Stratton Mountain, VT - March 21, 2009
1. Danny Kass, Portland, OR, 93.50
2. Peetu Piiroinen, Finlane, 91.83
3. Luke Mitrani, Mammoth Lakes, CA, 89.83
4. Charles Reid, Canada, 82.50
5. Steve Fisher, Breckenridge, CO, 82.00
1. Torah Bright, Australia, 96.00
2. Kelly Clark, Mt. Snow, VT, 93.33
3. Ellery Hollingsworth, Stratton, VT, 87.00
4. Kjersti Oestgaard Buaas, Norway, 84.67
5. Gretchen Bleiler, Aspen, CO, 82.00
Kjersti Oestgaard Buaas and Scotty Lago earned the first titles of this year's US Open, taking home top honors and $10,000 in cash for their overall impression on the judges after the quarterpipe jam. In addition, Buaas took home another $3,000 after boosting 16' and Luke Mitrani launched 25' and won $3,000 each compliments of Amp Energy for the highest air in the quarterpipe competition.
Kjersti impressed the judges with her big backside airs, air to fakies and going for broke with different grabs. Buaas had this to say about her big win, "It hasn't really sunk in yet, I never ride quarterpipe, I didn't know what to expect. I tried to take things from the halfpipe and use them in the quarterpipe, and it really paid off."
Scotty Lago wowed the crowds by pulling out every trick in the book and scored points with his clean style and lofty airs. Lago spun frontside and backside, throwing down tricks like a frontside 720 truckdriver and a corked back 540. "I really wanted to do well," said Lago. "The jam format was awesome. I have been coming to the US Open for 13 years and this is the first time that I have been on the podium, I'm so excited."
Daniel Ek of Norway took 2nd for the men and Sebastien Toutant (CAN) placed 3rd, taking home $5,000 and $2,500 respectively. For the ladies, Lisa Wiik (NOR) placed second and took home $5,000 and Elena Hight (USA) won $2,500 for third.
After an insane night of riding, the quarterpipe crowds were treated to a free RJD2 show.