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Dave Vision Tribute Show, Aquarian

Of everything I have ever written, this is likely to be among the most meaningful to me. In early January, we said good-bye to Dave Franklin of Vision, aka DaVish, a guy who welcomed me deeper into New Jersey punk/hardcore 20 years ago, as he did for so many over the years that I now count as friends.

Photo by Ken Salerno

On Sunday, April 2, we will celebrate Dave's life and character in the best way we know how - with a raucous hardcore show at Convention Hall in Asbury Park. I'll be the first to admit that it will be an emotional day.

Photo by Ken Salerno

That said, I am honored to have be given the opportunity to write this piece for The Aquarian on the Doing It For Dave show and weave in some of the many stories of our brother. Thanks to Pete Tabbot and Derek Rinaldi who gave me some gold, and photos that span decades from "The Pope," himself, Ken Salerno. You can find the hard copy of the Aquarian at your favorite convenience store. I'll be saving this issue.

We miss you, Dave.

Photo by Ken Salerno
Photo by Ann Coen
Photo by Ken Salerno
Photo by Ken Salerno

Red Bull Switchboard

Deep crew. Kyle Arcomano/Red Bull.

Since I started snowboarding, it was always very deeply tied to surfing and skating. Even though I've always been merely average at all three, I've has this fascination with the crossover - surfing a big north swell at Holyoke in the morning and running up to the Poconos for the twilight session, hiking a hit in Northern California and then checking the jetty at Humboldt before dark, riding at Whistler one day and then making the trek out to Vancouver Island to surf the next. I love it.

So I was fairly excited when Red Bull asked me to work with them on Switchboard, an event that involved surfing in Asbury and riding Mountain Creek... in the same day. And while we're at it, why not skate the bowl at Fourth Union? (Thanks Uncle Derek.) Unlike so many events that are designed to spotlight the elite, this was all about a bucket list experience that anyone could enjoy.

Red Bull Switchboard 2017: Asbury Park, NJ from Foreword Films on Vimeo.

Yep, the surf was ridiculously flat last Saturday when we all met on the beach (23 degrees - nice touch, New Jersey) so we had a few hearty souls jump in the drink for effect. My bud, Dave Werner is a very good sport.

Werner, good sport. Good at a lot of sports too. Kyle Arcomano/Red Bull.

We skated the bowl and then headed up to Mountain Creek, where I learned to ride over two decades ago. I helped direct the content with photographer Kyle Arcomano and Foreword Films.

While this was based at the college demographic in California for a few years, in New Jersey it was everyone from awesome Dads with kids to pro surfers. Every got in some laps, a few surf turns and messed around in the park before all the high fives and hot waffles at the base. Great time, great people.

And they used this old man's blunt stall as the feature image at RedBulll.com with my story, which is hysterical.

Check my stories at Eastern Surf Magazine.

All photos Kyle Arcomano/Red Bull

Coen blunt. Kyle Arcomano/Red Bull.
Rob Kelly. Kyle Arcomano/Red Bull.
Morning surf (attempt.) Kyle Arcomano/Red Bull.

Venice Skate Doc to Be Shown in Asbury, GrindTV

When we first started surfing and skating the Casino Skate Park in Asbury Park in the 90s, it was a different kind of town. And when we saw the "Dogtown and Z-Boys" doc a few years later and got the full history of Venice Beach, we used to say Asbury was the East Coast's Dogtown. And just like Venice, it was the creatives, the skaters, musicians, tattoo artists, and surfers who were the first to have a stake in rebuilding Asbury.

For the last few years, a couple buds in that area, especially my good friend/skate legend/writer/and Bloody Mary connoisseur, Derek Rinaldi have been pushing to get a legitimate skate park in Asbury. For as weird (or as uncharacteristically normal) as everything is getting up in the city but he sea, this is an awesome movement.  The park has been approved by the city council, but now there are the new hurdles of awareness, location, and funds. On July 23, The Asbury Park Skateboard Foundation will host a free screening of "Made In Venice," which isn't even out yet, thanks to the Asbury Park Film Initiative - a fitting film considering the two city's common stories on opposite coasts. And NJ native, Mike Valelly will be there as part of the Street Plant "Open Hearted" tour. This is all super cool. 

And I hope to someday head up to Asbury to roll around the new park with my kid.

Read the full Venice/Asbury story on GrindTV.