Snowboard on the Block brought snow, music, films, and an all-around good time to Downtown Denver this past weekend! The Annual festival that welcomes winter and gets people hyped for the upcoming season included two days of entertainment this year in a new location at Sculpture Park, right downtown next to the Convention Center, home of SIA. The new location was a serious upgrade from previous years, and made the event much more enjoyable not being on hot asphalt all day long since the weather was once again nearly 90 degrees despite it being moved back a month. The stage setup, rail jam setup, giant outdoor screen, and inside theater were also big improvements from last year.
The Railjam was definitely a big step up from previous years with dual 30 ft down bars, two 30 ft down flat downs, and a massive closeout feature to flat. All with some super sketchy cheese grater stairs to make it that much more gnarly. The jam featured a great lineup of riders including: Jaeger Bailey, Dylan Alito, Alex Martin, Jesse Paul, Zak Hale, Nial Romanek, Brady Lem, Jordan Morse, and Seth Hill. Alex Martin won himself a spot after winning a qualifier rail jam up at Woodward two weeks before. With Alex, Dylan Alito, and Seth Hill all competing in the rail jam, Colorado was represented very well. Some heavy tricks went down, and in the end it was a unanimous decision that Jesse Paul deserved the crown and won himself $2000 and a private jet to Vegas. Nial Romanek, who won best trick, Brady Lem, and Jordan Morse, along with friends got to ball out with Jesse in the jet. Our sources tell us the jet was originally for Steve Aoki, who bailed on Snowboard on the Block for more money at a festival in Brazil. But seriously he has no business at Snowboard on the Block in the first place, so that was great Aoki didn’t show and the riders who risked their seasons on the massive set up, who deserved it, got to enjoy the private jet. The Vans Off the Wall Pro Jam was one of the highlights of the two day event, for sure.
The weekend brought a huge list of video premieres with tons of giveaways thrown out by Eddie Wall and Craig McMorris, who kept the crowd entertained throughout the event. The list of films included titles from Never Summer, Videograss, Think Thank, Method Mag, Shred Bots and the Manboys, Wildcats, Transworld, Snowboarder, Bode Merill, Runway Films, Absinthe, and Union! A pretty heavy lineup, and to have them all in one place is what makes Snowboard on the Block such a great event. If we had to pick favorites somehow, Fulll Moon, Reckless Abandon, and Stronger would definitely make the cut. The new venue allowed for much better, more comfortable viewing of these epic films and there was even a smaller theater to get out of the heat for awhile.
Not only was there snowboarding, but this year a mini ramp was back in full effect, with a 4 ft extension. This thing was getting destroyed the entire weekend, and was perfect for the 80+ degree weather in Denver.
What better way than to accompany all the snowboarding, skateboarding, and summer weather then music on the outdoor stage? Snowboard on the Block had a nice mix of genres performing at this year's festival, thank god without Steve Aoki what a joke that guy is... but with some indy rock, rap, edm, and Afroman whichever genre he falls under. The headliners were Chief Keef on Friday, with his posse of 30 dudes on stage, and Wolfmother on Saturday. Wolfmother absolutely slayed it and was great to have at the festival. The other artists who performed in downtown Denver were Mimosa, Afroman, and Marty Party. Afroman seemed to be the festival favorite as the clear night sky above Denver suddenly became very cloudy.
Overall, Snowboard on the Block was a success and a great event by bringing live snowboarding to downtown Denver, an insane lineup of video premieres, live music, a mini ramp, all the vendors and food trucks, and free swag. It was definitely not as rowdy as year’s past, but that was probably because of the $7 beers with no cheap beer option, and increased price of tickets to the event. Let’s hope they fix that next year, but definitely a great weekend in the heart of Denver.