Industry News 1/7/2008

Skateboarding Stands Front and Center at ASR January

Skateboarding Stands Front and Center at ASR January

Expanded skate hardgoods section, Native American skateboarding and Lord of the Lines contest enhance skate’s presence at ASR

Skateboards, and those who create and innovate products to further skateboarding, stand front and center at ASR, January 24-26. As ASR attendees step onto the show floor from registration, they will be entering straight into the new skateboard hardgoods section. Throughout the show dozens of skate focused events will add to the vibrant energy found at ASR.
“Like most board sports, hardgoods are the essence of the skate marketplace and industry,” says Andy Tompkins, ASR Show Director. “ASR is always looking for new ways to help support the industry and expand the market. Creative events, specialty sections and newsworthy exhibits are just a few of the tools in our chest.”
Board-Trac’s Size of Market Report indicated that last year $5.2 billion was spent on skateboarding gear, apparel, and accessories. IASC, the skate industry trade association, cites over 12-million skateboarders in the US, and 25-million worldwide. ASR January will showcase over 50 of the world’s strongest builders of decks, trucks and wheels that push skate participation.
ASR has teamed up with IASC to present the most complete collection of skate hardgoods available to retailers today. Some of the brands exhibiting in the hardgoods’ area at ASR include, Stereo, Darkhorse, World Industries, Destructo, Deluxe, and Listen.
“We see ASR as a great way to kick off 2008," says Kevin Lewis, VP of Sales and Marketing at Stereo. "We expect great things with the attendance, and always welcome the chance to meet our customers face to face, shake their hands, and say thanks!”
According to Todd Harder at the Inter-Tribal Skate Group, skateboarding is one of the fastest growing sports on Native American reservations today. An exhibit on the influence of skateboarding on Native American culture is currently on display at the Smithsonian. The Smithsonian is bringing an abbreviated version to the ASR lobby. Adjacent to the exhibit, four Native American skateboarding brands will be displaying product.
“A lot of the Native kids can relate to skateboarding because it is an extreme sport that speaks to the kids' warrior spirit and bravery is one of our traditional values,” says Harder. "In any arena people identify with images and likenesses that they are familiar with."
A wide variety of skate contests and demos are taking place at ASR January including the Matix Lord of the Lines contest. From 1-4:00pm on Saturday, Matix will host an invite only list of pro/am skaters to compete on a series of rails and other features for a $16,000 prize purse, a LOTL record.

Master board maker, Paul Schmitt brings CreateAskate, a non-profit that offers students the chance to make their own skateboard decks, to ASR’s Skate Hardgoods Section. The goal of CreateAskate at ASR is to educate retailers on how to attract new customers to skateboarding and inspire shop owners to implement programs that create a positive image of skateboarding.

In between checking out lines and attending the many events, ASR attendees can check out the mini-ramp and a mix of flat ground and obstacles for street skating. The mini-ramp, built by Jim Bell, will be 64 feet wide with multiple heights and extensions.