Steve Caballero, Lance Mountain, Chris Miller, Pat Ngoho and more of the masters that made skateboarding what it is today are coming together in Portland for the Alli Rideshop Legends Jam.
The legends of the sport will be riding the Dew Tour's modern take on bowl skating in the portable concrete structure designed by Chris Miller and engineered by Spohn Ranch.
“I couldn't be happier with introducing bowl skating to the Dew Tour," said Miller. "The portable concrete bowl is incredible and really showcases what the sport is all about. Now with the addition of the Alli Rideshop Legends Jam, Dew Tour is putting the spotlight on the heritage of skateboarding and the pioneers who helped make the sport what it is today.”
Sunday's Alli Rideshop Legends Jam is from 3:30-4:30, Aug. 14, during the Dew Tour's Portland Invitational. Other legends here to skate the jam are Tony Magnusson, Steve Alba and Wally Innouye.
“We grew up riding pools, and pools and bowls, in my opinion, are very different. Bowl skating is very much mini ramp and halfpipe skating combined,” Mountain said. “It’s a different type of skating and I think it will be very obvious when you see the legends skate. Someone like Cab is very adapting to things, he’ll adapt to anything and that’s why he’s lasted 30 years as a pro. And I can adapt to some extent, that’s why I’ve been able to last. Chris Miller has really refined his skating down, and he will absolutely shine in there.”
The format of the event will be a 20-minute jam with all the guys at once, and the top run wins.
“It's a next step for this event to keep pace with skating that is always changing,” Ngoho said. “I look at it as an art form that just never stops evolving. It's a very progressive expression. As we've seen in skateboarding if you know a little bit of history about it, it started off with freestyle, then the pools came around and skate parks came out of that. Skate parks, at least in California, they all went away. So the creative skaters, they built ramps, and then a whole discipline was born out of that. Next, street skating came around and grew from a lot of individuals, a lot of them right up here in Oregon, like Mark "Red" Scott of Dreamland Skateparks. They started a whole new renaissance of skate parks and they just started building and it just exploded here in the Pacific Northwest. We had our renaissance in California shortly thereafter and with it, a whole new generation of skaters which we're seeing here today.”
A portable concrete bowl isn't something Ngoho would have thought of as realistic in his time.
"Then again, here I am in my 40s and if you would have asked me if I'd still be skateboarding - we all retired in our early 20s," Ngoho said. "The next generation was coming around, and you could just see that was the thing to do. But nobody knew and that's the power of skating. It's constantly surprising us in every aspect of it - from the terrain that we're riding, to the equipment that we're on and the guys that are doing it. You just never know which direction it goes and what's happening, and I guess that's why we love it."
Mountain looks towards contests as a way to showcase all types of skating to the fans.
"From the beginning, skateboard comps weren't designed for athletes to make money," Mountain said. "They were designed to promote what we did to other people, and let them fall in love with skateboarding. The idea of a contest is to gather groups of specialized guys and say here they are, take it or leave it, what you want. It's more like music to me. Here are the bands, which one do you like? It's about turning other people on to it and having them fall in love with it. That's really what the goal of a contest is."
So whether you're a Cab fan, a Miller fan or you had Lance Mountain on your wall as a kid, Sunday's Alli Rideshop Legends Jam is going to showcase all the best styles of skateboarding's heritage.
Steve Caballero and Chris Miller
"That's why skateboarding is so good," Mountain said. "That's why people did it. It's not like tennis, where you know what you're supposed to do and whoever does it better is the best. It's all about rewriting it. These arenas are going to show people, here's what it is. You take and do what you want with it. You can get inspired by it, you fall in love with it, you keep doing it. You buy some of the product if you want. Pick or choose what you want."
And Caballero is just stoked to be part of it all.
“I'm just amazed at how far the technology of skateboarding has come, even with the terrain,” Caballero said. “This is one of the most amazing temporary bowls I've ever ridden. So I'm really excited to be here and really stoked to be a part of this generation.”