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Forum Summer Bash
The Boarder and the UK Snowboard Forum strut their funky stuff on the lakes and slopes of Tamworth. All invited to join in.
Now in its second year the Summer Bash got off to a fine start. Arriving on Friday, I saw about 20 or so tents already pitched and the keen few already well on the way to alcoholic oblivion. Gary at the Snowdome had already brought in some beer for those without. As the night progressed more and more people rolled in, pitched their tents and got on with the difficult, but necessary chore of deciding whether it was to be the red or white wine spritzers for the evening. Whatever we were drinking, it seemed to be very popular with the local midge population and by the end of the weekend many looked like they'd turned up for a bubonic plague convention rather than a spot of boarding. The weather was with us for the whole weekend and after the recent heat wave, the warm but cloudy weather was spot on for a weekend outside.
Brinkz pulled out his mountain board and a brave few took turns being pulled up and down the field behind a nutter in a car. No injuries there, so back to the drinking. As the Scottish contingent had already arrived (and the formerly agreed slab of beer provided by me for their effort in attendance) there was also an impromtu skantily clad swimming session as people debated whether it was a lake or a loch. Okay, it was the Scottish lot that thought it was a loch. Everybody else knew it was a lake.
As the sun began to rise the die hard drinkers decided that perhaps it really was time for bed and many, but not all drifted off to tents, VWs and cars to try and get some shut eye. As the night progressed more and more people drifted in and so as I awoke a few hours later I was greeted by a field fairly packed with tents and cars and people, unbelievably, still drinking.
The lake's BBQ then beckoned and the meat was slapped, the buns split and the cheese squirted. Shiny and Cypry set up the decks and the music started in earnest as even more people drifted into the field and set up more tents. 873 and ProDog had a memorable three hours battling it out. There was even a bit of an impromtu volleyball session going off at one stage.
The wakeboarding tutors, it would seem, have no idea about how to snowboard. They kept telling us to do it like this, not like snowboarding, but all the moves were exactly the same as snowboarding. So even the beginners suprised them by being rather good and by the end of each session everybody was on the end of the rope, with a few who had done it last year getting air, performing powerslides and riding switch. If you haven't tried it, give it a go. Falling headfirst into water is not so painful as falling headfirst onto ice.
Then came the task of sorting lifts to the Snowdome. I rammed the VW full and set off. First it was the tubing, which is a right laugh, especially as the heavier you are the faster you go. Luckily, being big-boned, speed was with me.
The majority then retired to the bar to prepare for the main event. Gary at the Snowdome had said that 81 had pre-booked for the event, so there was probably close on 100 on the slope from the Forum/TheBoarder. This year nobody managed to end up in casualty, although StellaVision's drunken attempt at boarding was certainly the closest contender. All the sponsors' gear was thrown down and ProDog "I say BO, you say SELECTA" did a rather special 90 minutes on the radio mic before getting hit from behind and the mic giving up the ghost for the evening.
Then an even greater faff to sort lifts back to the lake. Again, the van was packed to bursting and cruised back to the lake Sten guns coughing death. More beer and Pot Noodles were had and people gradually passed out. The greatest danger then emerged with one nutter (he's since apologised) going bonkers in his 4x4 at 3am on Saturday night, scaring people in their flimsy tents and eventually driving it into the lake and popping a tyre off.
The next morning saw more than a few sore heads congregate at the lake's club house for full traditional English and Hedex breakfast. As morning dragged on, the majority drifted off after many a tearful farewell. The remaining few headed into Birmingham for the Epic Skate Park. I'm no skater, but that place is pretty cool. Ramps, bowls, metally things, up and down whatsits and other stuff and all for under 10 of your Earth pounds.
You can see what happened in the galleries below, but the words and pictures are never going to tell the whole story. The sense of community was pretty special and I'm not ashamed to say it brought a tear to my eye to see everybody having such a good time. It was just a great laugh to spend the weekend alternatively chilling and then getting active with the sports stuff.
A massive thanks to the sponsors who got stuff to us in time. It was a right chore getting rid of all the stuff. I'll be sure to hire a "give awayerer" next time.
Ta for Gary at the SnowDome who was the real organiser behind the event, sorting both the slope and the lake out.
Thanks to the staff at the lake for putting up with everthing and the staff at SnowDome. They all got boxes of chocs this year. I think that helped :)
A big thanks to Chris Kelly who did us proud on the PA, until it got broken. 90 minutes without swearing. Played that man. Also to Cypry, ProDog, 873 and Shiny for the tunes and battling DJs.
A pat on the back to PosterBoy and madasabadger for the "Busted" T-shirts. I believe they now have a deal lined up with Epic Skate Park. Thanks to anybody who purchased one of our new bits of gear. They'll be available on the site soon and we already have advanced orders.
But, the biggest thanks must go to everybody who turned up. TheBoarder has never been about the Snowboard Industry, it's always been for people who like to snowboard. You made the event. There will be another Bash next Summer.
The Forum Summer Bash event page can be administered by dunx (Dunx), stu (Stu Brass), spencer (Spencer Claridge) and office (Office).
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