Volcom Stone’s Mid-Atlantic Bananarama Excursion 2001

Plantains: Shawn “Barney” Barron, Ozzie Wright, Ian Parnell, Mike “Not A Gremmie Anymore” Guarino, Billy Hume, Jeff “Huh?” Crego, Sean Slater, Daniel Terry, Brad Dougherty, Kevin “Kevlar” Braden, Troy Eckert, Richard “Wooly” Woolcott, and Chris Wilson (the photo magician).

Musical Guests:Places To Park, Ridgemont, Don’t Look Down, and $.05 Deposit.CalloutsBanana Man seemed to keep us focused on our fifth summer Volcom tour that found us floating across five states on the East Coast.

We awoke to a brisk knock on the door the next morning at precisely 11:00 a.m. It was the same manager from last night, except this time he had a police officer with him to kick us out of the hotel.

We meticulously stamped Volcom Stones on everyone’s skin, and then we went night surfing to finish off our evenings.

After about a dozen times of slicing everything from my hands to my feet by sliding down the barnacle-covered buoy, I finally made it to the top.

Everyone sat along the bank of the inlet, laughing and yelling while each person jumped off the bridge into total darkness.

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If you’re out fishing on the high seas and you ask a fellow deep-sea fisherman about bananas, he’ll most likely give you a bad look and kick you off his boat because bananas are considered bad luck on deep-sea fishing boats. This wasn’t the case on our Mid-Atlantic East Coast Summer Volcom Tour this past August, though-the banana was our mascot and friend. Banana Man seemed to keep us focused on our fifth summer Volcom tour that found us floating across five states on the East Coast. We had parties and other assorted gatherings while Banana Man watched over and guided us.

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Chris Wilson, our photo magician, and I jump-started the first day of our two weeks on the road-we were the first to arrive in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The Volcom RV was on its way from Cali with V.O.B. (Volcom’s Other Barney, a.k.a. Banana Man) and Troy Eckert, who took the liberty of doing the cross-country haul. Anyway, the V-CO RV finally made its way to VA Beach within a day or so. Many of the team guys-Brad Dougherty, Ozzie Wright, and Shawn “Barney” Barron-were flying in from France. Other crew members included Ian Parnell, Billy Hume, Mikey Guarino from the Northeast, and Daniel Terry, Jeff Crego, Shane Pickney, and me from Florida.

Just before everyone arrived, Daniel Terry, Jeff Crego, Chris Wilson, and I checked ourselves into a room at the Schooner Inn. It was Mr. Wilson’s birthday, so we took full advantage of this as a reason to go out on the town. Getting back to the hotel about 3:00 a.m. or so, we were greeted by the Schooner Inn manager who told us they had many complaints about our room, even though we hadn’t been there all night. So we ignored him and ventured back out into the darkness for some fun. After night surfing and trying to climb up a twenty-foot channel buoy for about two hours, we finally turned in around five in the morning.

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We awoke to a brisk knock on the door the next morning at precisely 11:00 a.m. It was the same manager from last night, except this time he had a police officer with him to kick us out of the hotel. Even though we hadn’t caused any problems, we weren’t allowed on the hotel’s property anymore because of some other people’s noise. All of this happened on the first night of our trip, and no one had even arrived yet!

Everything worked itself out eventually, and the hotel proprietors admitted to wrongly accusing us. I went ahead and moved my belongings out to the V-CO RV in the parking lot anyway. That hotel has been good to us for the past ten years, and I’m sure it’ll continue to be so in the future.

The surf was completely flat for the first few days, so the V-CO Mid-Atlantic Tour family had plenty of energy to use up during our week’s stay in VA Beach. The East Coast Surfing Championships, which is the oldest running surfing event in the U.S., was on our hit list for thfirst week of the tour. The first three nights consisted of going out and stickering everyone all over town. We meticulously stamped Volcom Stones on everyone’s skin, and then we went night surfing to finish off our evenings.

Ian Parnell and I paddled out to the channel buoy once again-we couldn’t climb up the damn thing the first night because the tide was too low. This time, Ian climbed up it first try and kamikazeed off the top. After about a dozen times of slicing everything from my hands to my feet by sliding down the barnacle-covered buoy, I finally made it to the top. I was completely covered in scrapes, but it was definitely worth it.

The parking lot of the Schooner Inn became a V-CO compound complete with an RV, tents, banners, Red Bulls, and loud tunes. The event was postponed for a couple days because of looming flatness, so we had to make up fun things to do: Turning V.O.B. into the Banana Man takes nothing more then a few Red Bulls and he’s ready to work. Daniel, Mikey, Banana Man, and I rented a four-person bicycle and went out to promote our cause-an afternoon autograph signing at Guadalajara’s, a nice and healthy Mexican restaurant.

Driving up and down the boardwalk with 60 electrified kids chasing the Banana Man while he tossed out stickers was quite a spectacle: “This U-turn was sponsored by Banana Man, and Banana Man says, ‘Safety First!'” It was hilarious until we were stopped by a very proud police officer. Thoroughly tending to his job, he subsequently stopped us from any fun we might be having. We didn’t have a permit and were obviously in violation of several laws.

Guadalajara’s went off that night-the main highlight? The mother/daughter arm-wrestling contest. Free food for everyone meant smiles spread across the board. The after-party was 21 and up at the Excess Night Club, so let’s just say everyone of age felt the torn-up effect for days. Just ask Brad how many stickers were in his hair and on his back the next morning.

Around four in the morning, I left the Excess party and arrived at the V-CO RV, which was parked on a street next to a harbor where a 40-foot-high bridge stretched over a small inlet. Eckert, Mike, and Ian were up there and had already jumped off the bridge with a few other thrillseekers. By the time I joined them, there was a police officer shining his patrol car’s spotlight directly at us. We all laughed and hid from the cop’s light on top of the bridge-ready and waiting to jump as we watched him leave. I guess you need a permit for jumping off bridges at four in the morning as well. It was a long way down off that bridge, and the cuts on my feet didn’t help me one bit. Everyone sat along the bank of the inlet, laughing and yelling while each person jumped off the bridge into total darkness.

The ECSC began the next day in tricky two- to four-foot conditions-the wind made sections disappear moments after you took off on them. Daniel Terry and Jeff Crego both made it to the money round, but fell short of the semis. We finally had some surf after such a disappointing summer. I think everyone was eager to get to Cape Hatteras in North Carolina to get out some pent-up aggression in good surf.

After a couple more crazy nights in VA Beach, we headed to Nags Head, North Carolina and our next destination-The Pit Surf Shop. About 40 kids showed up to meet futuristic-creative-artistic-surfing enthusiasts Ozzie Wright and Shawn “Barney” Barron. After an intense autograph signing, we had to tend to the next matter of business for the day-the Nags Head Bowling Alley gathering.

The band Ridgemont jammed for the all-ages audience before 10:00 p.m. while the Volcom Bowling Challenge took place, in which Billy Hume took top honors. After working on this tour all summer with Daniel, watching kids get stoked on everything makes it all worthwhile. Thank you, Nags Head Bowling, for having us and feeding us all night!

The next morning we awoke to fun, two- to four-foot glassy barrels at S-Turns. The conditions were crowded, but that’s what happens every year when the ECSC rolls around. Ozzie blasted airs all over the place-I didn’t even know what to call half the stuff I saw him pull. When Ozzie’s on a wave, it seems that he has this invisible turbobooster underneath him at times. Barney also has this strange, futuristic creativity in the water as well. Everyone was surfing unreal-thanks to so much built-up energy from not surfing. After a full day in the water, we headed back to Billy Hume’s house for Volcom’s annual team cookout and to gear up for Ocean City, Maryland-the next day’s destination.

We endured our six-hour haul to Ocean City in the RV with “Fluffy Furry Buddy” by Ween blasting on the music maker. Pulling up to Cloudbreak Surf Shop with a bullhorn blaring out the window, we noticed about 100 or so skaters, parents, and kids hangin’ out by the skatepark. If you haven’t seen this place, it’s a hardcore surf shop right across from the beach with a full street course in the back parking lot. Young Volcom skateboarder Mark Del Negro from Delaware was the champ of the best-trick event, and Ridgemont jammed on top of one of the ramps. The scene at Ocean City was basically just a bunch of stoked kids having an amazing day of riding.

That night we held our rager at Bamboo’s, a restaurant/bar in downtown Ocean City. Three bands were there to rock the house-$.05 Deposit, a sick punk-rock band from New York that showed up first in a short school bus it travels in; Don’t Look Down arrived from Chicago; and Ridgemont was on tour with us since the VA Beach show. There was a nasty mosh pit with girls and guys trying to smash each other-luckily, none of the girls got hurt.

Outside Bamboo’s, at about three in the morning, we ran into about twenty future rappers. All of them freestyled through the bullhorn in the middle of the street. It was classic, I’m sure there’ll be some video footage of it floating around soon. All of the bands went off, and the V-CO RV stayed right where it was from the night before, which meant safety for the residents of Ocean City, Maryland.

Next stop was Mantoloking, New Jersey-a popular spot called Use To Be’s and Cafe La Playa. Use To Be’s is the bar, and Cafe La Playa is the restaurant that puts on a show with Volcom and the Surfrider Foundation every year. Ridgemont, $.05 Deposit, and Don’t Look Down rocked a packed house. I could actually sit back and watch the show this time, but unfortunately, it was also the last night for this kind of event during the rest of our two-week haul.

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We woke up at 5:00 a.m., still groggy from the night before, and pointed the V-CO RV to Sea Isle, New Jersey for the Heritage Pro. The contest started a day earlier, and as expected, Sea Isle had microscopic surf. It’s been the same story all summer, unfortunately. Sea Isle is a fun area-we covered the whole town with Volcom stickers. Our team barbeque was held at Heritage Surf Shop in the parking lot with a bunch of kids, plenty of food, and a heap of drinks. Kids feverishly skated on the side of the RV, and Banana Man threw out free product that sent everyone into a feeding frenzy. A big thanks goes out to the mayor of Sea Isle for letting us park the V-CO RV without problems every year. He’s the coolest person in New Jersey.

For me, this Volcom tour ended the next day because I had to head back to Florida for a Volcom party and The National Kidney Foundation Pro Surfing Event. Overall, everyone had a sufficient amount of stickers all over them and were just plain stoked.t glassy barrels at S-Turns. The conditions were crowded, but that’s what happens every year when the ECSC rolls around. Ozzie blasted airs all over the place-I didn’t even know what to call half the stuff I saw him pull. When Ozzie’s on a wave, it seems that he has this invisible turbobooster underneath him at times. Barney also has this strange, futuristic creativity in the water as well. Everyone was surfing unreal-thanks to so much built-up energy from not surfing. After a full day in the water, we headed back to Billy Hume’s house for Volcom’s annual team cookout and to gear up for Ocean City, Maryland-the next day’s destination.

We endured our six-hour haul to Ocean City in the RV with “Fluffy Furry Buddy” by Ween blasting on the music maker. Pulling up to Cloudbreak Surf Shop with a bullhorn blaring out the window, we noticed about 100 or so skaters, parents, and kids hangin’ out by the skatepark. If you haven’t seen this place, it’s a hardcore surf shop right across from the beach with a full street course in the back parking lot. Young Volcom skateboarder Mark Del Negro from Delaware was the champ of the best-trick event, and Ridgemont jammed on top of one of the ramps. The scene at Ocean City was basically just a bunch of stoked kids having an amazing day of riding.

That night we held our rager at Bamboo’s, a restaurant/bar in downtown Ocean City. Three bands were there to rock the house-$.05 Deposit, a sick punk-rock band from New York that showed up first in a short school bus it travels in; Don’t Look Down arrived from Chicago; and Ridgemont was on tour with us since the VA Beach show. There was a nasty mosh pit with girls and guys trying to smash each other-luckily, none of the girls got hurt.

Outside Bamboo’s, at about three in the morning, we ran into about twenty future rappers. All of them freestyled through the bullhorn in the middle of the street. It was classic, I’m sure there’ll be some video footage of it floating around soon. All of the bands went off, and the V-CO RV stayed right where it was from the night before, which meant safety for the residents of Ocean City, Maryland.

Next stop was Mantoloking, New Jersey-a popular spot called Use To Be’s and Cafe La Playa. Use To Be’s is the bar, and Cafe La Playa is the restaurant that puts on a show with Volcom and the Surfrider Foundation every year. Ridgemont, $.05 Deposit, and Don’t Look Down rocked a packed house. I could actually sit back and watch the show this time, but unfortunately, it was also the last night for this kind of event during the rest of our two-week haul.

[IMAGE 4]

We woke up at 5:00 a.m., still groggy from the night before, and pointed the V-CO RV to Sea Isle, New Jersey for the Heritage Pro. The contest started a day earlier, and as expected, Sea Isle had microscopic surf. It’s been the same story all summer, unfortunately. Sea Isle is a fun area-we covered the whole town with Volcom stickers. Our team barbeque was held at Heritage Surf Shop in the parking lot with a bunch of kids, plenty of food, and a heap of drinks. Kids feverishly skated on the side of the RV, and Banana Man threw out free product that sent everyone into a feeding frenzy. A big thanks goes out to the mayor of Sea Isle for letting us park the V-CO RV without problems every year. He’s the coolest person in New Jersey.

For me, this Volcom tour ended the next day because I had to head back to Florida for a Volcom party and The National Kidney Foundation Pro Surfing Event. Overall, everyone had a sufficient amount of stickers all over them and were just plain stoked.