Upon the conclusion of New York Surf Week, for the hosts, NYSEA, it felt a bit incomplete. That emptiness in our stomachs was because one event in particular was unfortunately cancelled without an official reschedule date in sight. With not much notice, the City of Long Beach granted the permit to hold the Bowl & Street Bash on Saturday August 20th. The NYSEA team quickly jumped to action and set up the new skate park with tents, bleachers, judging tables, and prepared for the highly anticipated first ever competition at the Long Beach skate park. 65 competitors ventured from Suffolk county and as far as the Bronx to compete for the chance at the first place $250 cash prizes.
The evening began with the kids division at the street section of the park. The wind was calm, sun was out, and with a 6 pm start time, the day began to cool to a perfect temperature. The young skaters took to the park with two heats that would advance, eventually crowning one top score out of the two final heats. Nat Rabinor, the youngest competitor at seven years old, came into the first final heat with some quick transitions and completing a blunt stall on the quarter pipe, putting everyone else’s back up against the wall. Brendan Miller, Beau Chan, and Luke Vetrone were also stand outs in the kids division, pumping quick and using the flat bar and step up to land some nice maneuvers. In the end, it was Brian Scala of Oceanside who would take home the first place prize pack filled with goodies from event sponsors. With the conclusion of the grom division, Gino’s Pizzeria provided everyone with some delicious pizza, the sun disappeared, and the lights were clicked on for the pro division.
All eyes were on Shane McGrane and Nicholas Ramos for most of the street division. They battled through the rounds making it to the final with smooth style and technical tricks. Tough decisions were had to be made by the judges, being that everyone was skating well. However, it was Brandon Johnson that landed a big 360 flip over the hip and wowing the crowd with a massive 360 air from the quarter pipe to the boardwalk who took down the street division and walked out with $250. “I used all my money to get here from the Bronx (laughs). I had to win,” says Brandon.
It has been a long road for Long Beach to finally obtain a well built concrete skate park. Years in the making actually. After Super Storm Sandy, when Long Beach began getting it’s bearings back, the permit was granted to build this park, with a long bowl as one of the main focal points. The bowl features a roll in, vert extension, and many transitions. The bowl was the second half of the pro divisions center stage, and did not disappoint spectators. Local boy Noah Wilson was awarded Best Trick from the judges, launching a massive transfer out of the bowl into the flat of the park. Colin Armata, and Jesse Mac demanded the attention of the crowd, ripping around the bowl hitting the coping and committing to and landing some big aerial maneuvers. Eddie Henriquez stayed consistently boosting trick after trick over the coping and would end up taking home the other grand prize of $250 cash.
Thank you to the City of Long Beach, and all event sponsors including, NYSEA, Skudin Surf, Hurley, Honest Tea, 3 Water, Gino’s Pizzeria, Vintage Seltzer, Cliff Bar, Unsound Surf, LB Surf, Brand’s Deli, Revv Lifestyle, Triple 8, Patagonia, Chilean Clothing, and Ini Cooperative. Also, big thanks to the judges, Joe Rockman, Tyler Kufs, Lorenzo Zaratan, and event coordinator Brian Adamkiewicz.