Tag Archives: vermont

Check Out: From The Borders, Full Movie

[vimeo https://vimeo.com/105773405 w=500&h+=280 ]

Creativity runs in the Mull family. I was fortunate to have the pater familias, Pete Mull, for an English teacher in high school, his passion for film put me on the path to where I am today. His sons, Dave, Steve, Tom and Charley have long been doing some of the most unique and interesting work within the skate world.

It makes me so hyped to see so many spots I grew up skating approached in a different way. There aren’t a ton of options for skaters in Vermont, certainly more now than there was a decade ago but it’s still pretty sparse out there. The Mulls and their friends have always made the best of the world around them, resulting in raw and entertaining skating.

I hope this film gets lots of exposure, it’d be well deserved. These guys have a different way of looking at things and I think skateboarding needs that now more than ever. Hell, the world at large needs that now more than ever.

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Sun Mtn Sessions IV

For the past four years between December 26th and 28th Bromley Mountain has played host to the Sun Mtn Sessions. The freeform snowboard camp run by Tim Benasich and myself, focuses on progressing freestyle skills by way of using the excellent natural terrain found at Bromley, as well as educating riders on the rich snowboard heritage of the area. Many of the scene’s top athletes and personalities got their start at Bromley and jump at the chance to stop by during the holiday season.

Though heavy rain stole away the ample early season snow that Bromley had received, this past year proved to be as fun as ever. A day of snow, a day of sun, a day of man made mountains that proved incredibly entertaining, that was Sun Mtn Sessions IV.

The closing party once again featured excellent wood fired pizza from Sammy’s in Manchester,VT and product giveaways from Burton Snowboards, Vestal Watches, Smith Optics, The Nice Life Apparel Co, Vew-Do Balance Boards and 3L Apparel.

Proceeds from the camp are donated to J.I.S.P. which helps get local kids to the mountain and into a group instruction program. Special thanks to Burleigh Sunflower and the Bromley Mountain Snowmaking Team for making sure the conditions were the best they could be.

See you in December for our 5th Anniversary year featuring a concert by hologram Tupac and The Muppets!

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adidas Snowboarding| Welcome: Kazu Kokubo

The “Welcome:” series from adidas Snowboarding is a perfect example of what good filmmaking is all about, honesty. From the first piece featuring Jake Blauvelt I knew this was going to be an exercise in truth, not just an extended commercial for adidas. It’s no surprise seeing as adidas has always had top notch skateboard content and a carefully cultivated team. I’m just happy that eye for special talent and individuality crossed over to their snowboard program.

It’s been nearly 11 years since I first met Kazu and having watched him transition from a quiet contest kid to one of the truly elite riders in snowboarding has been something very special indeed. I knew the stories of Jake, Eric, Forest and Keegan before watching their pieces and while that didn’t make them any less enjoyable, it did in some ways spoil “the moment”.

Though Kazu is a friend, I’ve never quizzed him on what makes him tick or the details of his childhood. Perhaps it is for that reason that Kazu’s piece is my favorite of the series. He grew up on the other side of the world but for some reason I’ve always felt a certain kinship with the guy and now I know why. If you think about it, a small town in Japan is not so different than a small town in Vermont. People work hard, value nature and a-lot of them drive Subarus. Hokkaido may as well be Japan’s New England, how’s that for an incredibly bold statement with no academic reinforcement?

All the cultural differences, the language barrier, they’re of little consequence when it comes to snowboarding because in snowboarding style speaks louder than words and Kazu has always had it in spades. Flipping of judges, straight-lining the pipe, refusing to conform to a clothing standard, that’s Kazu’s style, real, honest style and it’s something snowboarding can’t get enough of.

Seen & Heard: Naturally

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This past Tuesday I shot down to Oakley’s HQ in Irvine for the world premiere of Naturally starring fellow Vermonter and #vanlife afficionado, Jake Blauvelt. As I sat in traffic on the 405 I had plenty of time to think about what I was expecting the film to be like and how it would stack up against the film I’d seen just 5 days prior, Nike’s NeverNot. I was completely (and pleasantly) surprised by the style of Naturally and I cant’t say how it stacks up against NeverNot because they’re such different films. Even though they’re both comedies about golf you can’t (shouldn’t) compare Happy Gilmore to Caddyshack so I’ll leave it at that. Continue reading

Today’s Most Wanted: Burton 2014 Jackets

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Let’s talk about softgoods. You want to look cool on the hill, everyone does, especially the people who say they don’t care about how their gear looks. It used to be an issue of function over fashion that separated one outwear brand from another. Now it’s quite the opposite because everyone has a premium line guaranteed to keep you warmer, drier and more comfortable than the other guys. What separates one brand from another is their attention to detail, fit and design quality. Being the large company that it is Burton is able to do these things better than almost anyone year after year. Pulling from their extensive archive and taking inspiration from a myriad places, the Winter 2014 Outerwear collection is a solid one. If you can’t find a kit you like then you might as well ride naked (please don’t) because they’ve really covered all the bases.

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Today’s Most Wanted: Burton 2014 Hardgoods

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Remember! Remember! The 13th of August! The boards, the bindings, the boots! This is the season, the season of reason and we all aught to be ready to bomb chutes! Ok, it’s not as good as the original but I tried. Just imagine Hugo Weaving saying it, makes it better.

Anyway, it’s here, winter is here, you just don’t know it yet. It’s creeping into the back of your mind and soon you’ll be searching for video premiere dates, thinking about what pass to get, even looking at early snow tire deals. In Southern California winter isn’t so much a season as it is a state of mind so winter can start anytime I want it to and now seems about as good a time as any.

Like Killington always opening before any other mountain in the U.S. (even if it’s just one patch of snow on half a trail), Burton likes to beat everyone to the punch on their winter site launch. In the olden days I’d be overjoyed when “The Catalog” would arrive in the P.O. Box (google it kids) but now I settle for an email in my inbox letting me know the site is up.

Saving pictures of gear isn’t as much fun as reading and re-reading the catalog, dog earring pages, Sharpie in hand just to make sure I didn’t miss anything. But this is the modern world we live in and at least I get to share my two cents with anyone who’s willing to read my babble.

So, thanks for stopping by, I hope you enjoy the product and find what you’re looking for…in terms of snowboard gear, I’m not qualified to guide you in any sort of larger existential search for meaning in this world.

Cheers! Continue reading

Today’s Most Wanted: Burton 2013 Softgoods

This past Monday Burton’s 2013 site launched and with it the desire to be on the hill crept to the forefront of my mind. As I made evident in the Hardgoods post, Burton has once again come out with a very impressive line of goods for the 2013 season. The best pieces in the men’s line are clean and understated. Jackets that will look just as good on the street as they do on the mountain.  Yes many of these styles have been experimented with before by other smaller companies and many of them draw from classic looks but the difference is Burton’s resources. The technical fabrics, details and cuts are what separates Burton outerwear from the rest of the pack. Perhaps it’s that snowboarding is coming of age, gaining a certain level of maturity(for the most part) but I for one am very glad to see the continued refinement of outerwear. Sure there are wild patterns and prints to be found in the line but hey, there’s gotta be gear for kooks(Kook (n) an eccentric or foolish person) as well. I mean if there wasn’t, how else would you identify them as kooks? I mean besides watching them grabbing tindy and Zeaching boxes. Enjoy the gear after the jump and remember, shop local.

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Today’s Most Wanted: Burton 2013 Hardgoods

When I was just a little grom I would always get excited when I got my hands on the new Burton catalog. I’d sit down and carefully flip through all the pages reading about what new technology they’d come up with for that year(remember Super Fly Core II?) and all the new outerwear I’d seen pros rocking the season before. I suppose now that I’m an old man(by industry standards) I shouldn’t get as excited as I do for their website launch each year. I suppose I should be jaded like many of my friends who dismiss the new technology as unnecessary and the graphics as unimaginative. Many of them say Burton has lost touch with it’s roots and become too commercial. Bullshit. All you have to do is take a good look at the product for this year to see that now more than ever(and for the past 4-5 years in my opinion) Burton is doing an exceptional job of representing core snowboarding values while turning out killer product. This is not to say that I don’t have my issues with some of their choices(U.S. Open moving to Vail for example) but I can tell you that the gear I have is on a quality level all it’s own. So here, in the dogs days of summer, in the middle of this “heat wave” as Southern Californians call it(no humidity so who cares) I thought I’d put together a piece with the hard goods you should be most excited about putting to good use on the mountain this season. Burton says 2013 is an iconic year, I’d like think that’ll be the case. After all, scientists say that it’s gonna be a La Nina winter and getting skunked on a good season two years in a row, that’s just unheard of. Cheers.

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Imbibeable: Summer Beers

There are so many things that I enjoy about going back east to Vermont during the summer. Jumping into quarries (filled with water), the hum of a box fan in the window on a humid night, backyard campfires with old friends…horse flies . However one of the best things about going back for a summer visit every year is the many beers you can’t get out here in Southern California.

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Check Out

The photography of Edward Burtynsky and in particular his project “Oil”. Circumnavigating the globe Burtynsky captured the effects that our precious resource has, on not only our home but on our lives. Ranging from a Kiss concert in Sturgis to a ship-breaking yard in Bangladesh, these photographs capture a strange sort of beauty, one we don’t often notice. Maybe it’s because we don’t want to, maybe it’s just because we aren’t looking. Whether we remain dependent on oil for the remainder of humanity’s time on earth or not, we’ll certainly leave an interesting legacy of what was accomplished with the internal combustion engine and black gold.

Also make sure to check out the “Quarries” project, especially the Vermont section.

Cheers!