Downhill Disco 2016. San Diego, CA Skate Event
By: Jake Grove April 16th, 2016
The Downhill Disco has remained at the top of my list of best skate events; It’s one of the raddest events to skate, spectate, shoot, and lurk, and all within the local San Diego Scene. Scott Lembach of Muirskate has been making the event happen for five years now, and works harder each and every year to keep the stoke flowing. The event consists of a warehouse disco party, halfpipe ramp jam, boardercross skate course, biggest air contest, and cone-course race.
This year, Muirskate condensed the event from its normal three-day schedule (Friday party, Saturday freeride, Saturday night ramp jam, Sunday race) to a simpler two day schedule, with the ramp jam and party combined on saturday night. But even though the event may not have been happening friday night, Jonny Miller, Larry Lembach, and a handful of other skaters were putting in work at the Muirskate warehouse to finish the course and make some of the most unique hand-designed ramps.
After finishing up the course and calling it a night, Saturday morning arrived, with a plethora of stoked skaters surveying the hill. Riders of all ages and skills got down and shredded it up, with Bricin “Striker” Lyons on the mic keeping it alive. I ended up off a board the whole weekend and shooting the stills for the Wheelbase Recap, alongside David Ruano (KillSauce) who had the official event video handled. We weaved between skaters and ramps, with fisheyes narrowly avoiding disaster. Saturday went by with a chill vibe and abundance of skating, and everyone styled it up there own way.
As the sun dimmed, the biggest air contest came into place, and the hill went from skids, slips, and slides, to 20 foot boosted ollies over the crowd. Tibs Parise appeared on a 2x4 diy deck, and boosted it as far as he could. In the end, Bustin shredder Eddie Henriquez took first at 24 feet over the launch ramp.
We cleaned things up and headed to the party, where I started working on an art show setup with legendary skater Jonny Miller. We set up an art wall exhibit along with Pacific Northwest photographer Kevin Carlton, Alicia Fillback of the Animus code, and Max Capps (the choplord). It was a rad little art show, and was sick to see my work displayed along so many other great skater artists.
The art show held place in the corner of the party, which raged on from a ramp jam at eight to a full disco band groove at eleven. The ramp jam put some wear in on the newly renovated Muirskate ramp and brought out some of the gnarliest tricks and slams. Riders were dropping in five at a time, from all different directions, and sweeping past each other before clipping shoulders into the wall. The jam picked up, and before long, Tibs Parise, William Royce, and Eddie Henriquez were boosting out of the ramp and off the wall. The disco jams commenced and once the lights faded off, the dancefloor was live. The Family Band held the show down, and brought out the groove and moves in the room of skaters. I was partied out by the time eleven hit (actually dead from 14 hours of shooting) and dipped out as the party hit its peak.
Sunday came, and after a while of freeride, the course contest commenced. Riders battled it out, but when it came down to the finals, William Royce Faced off with Cole Trotta for first, while Brad Edwards and Jimmy Riha competed in the consolation round for third. Both heats were tight, but in the end Brad Edwards just barely poked in front of Jimmy; Brad got third and Jimmy fourth, but they split the money and a solid high five. Cole and Will Royce faced off in what had to have been five re-ran finals rounds on account of the closeness of the finish, and in the end Sector grom Cole Trotta took the win. They too however split the check and were stoked on the quality racing.
The Event winded down after that, and everyone parted ways, other than the volunteers who remained to leave the hill better than they found it. Until next year!