Most of our days at Skate Warehouse are spent working hard for the benefit of you guys, but other days we get to hit the streets. Almost Skateboards was having their 10 year anniversary at “The Berrics” on Friday – where Youness Amrani was rumored to turn pro. Volcom was premiering “True To This” at their headquarters in Costa Mesa, CA on Saturday. Obviously we couldn’t pass up either opportunity, so we killed two birds with one stone and hopped into the van and got on the road. So here is an inside look to both of these events.
The adventure began around Friday at noon. We all rendezvoused at the warehouse to kick off this ridiculous weekend. We had a tight six man crew consisting of Justin, Mike, Jade, Adam, Matt and myself. First things first we fueled up the van, beers were cracked and we were on our way. Of course when you put six dudes in a van you know the entire four hour car ride to LA would be filled with hijinx. From signs with vulgar writings, shit talking, and a van full of laughs and the start of some good memories.
Since we only fueled up the van and not our bodies, our next stop consisted of “In n Out” in Goleta. Quickly we all stuffed our faces with double doubles and French fries. Threw up some “Go Skate” stickers and spotted a barefooted kook. After that we were back on the road.
Our next stop was an abandoned ancient mini ramp somewhere on the coast of Carpinteria. This wasn’t just any kind of mini ramp, it was a childhood memory of our own Justin as a young boy. No one seemed to believe this thing even existed until we were all proven wrong. Caught between the freeway and some railroad tracks and a trek through some puddles and mud we finally found this gem of a spot. Justin’s face filled with joy and accomplishments plus the satisfaction of us all being put in our place for doubting him made this detour all the more worth it.
We finished up with Justin’s nostalgia. We were in for another few more hours on the road and that much closer to “The Berrics” to celebrate Almost’s 10 Year Anniversary. After a few more laughs, yelling at every girl that drove by in LA traffic and getting ready for one of the greatest weekends to be upon us. A few wrong turns were made trying to understand the hieroglyphics that one calls “Google Maps”. We finally arrived at “The Berrics”.
Let me briefly explain: going here was a childhood dream of mine. Let alone a fantasy that gratefully became a reality. I was in awe from the second we stepped foot inside. Like a kid in a candy shop it was completely overwhelming. I had just crossed off a huge item off my bucketlist. The park was packed with heads, crowded is literally an understatement. Like your stomach after a Thanksgiving dinner this park was filled to the brim. Adam brought a huge bag of tricks and displayed some amazing maneuvers.
Jade caught most of it on film until he was approached by an employee who informed that he was not allowed to film inside the park. Luckily for me I was not harassed and was able to capture the whole event via photos. Besides the crazy amount of skating there was pizza and ice coolers filled with beer. It was a feeding frenzy and if you blinked you would miss out on getting a slice. After a few hours went by Giovanni Reda (Wednesdays with Reda) got a hold of the mic and made a big speech.
As we all cheered for “Almost” there was one more announcement to make the crowd go wild. Reda announced to Youness Amrani that he was now pro!
The whole Almost team came out to congratulate him, along with his brother who flew from Belgium just to give him his first pro deck. Youness was filled with joy and tears began to flow. It was truly an amazing experience to witness it all. Congrats Youness Amrani! No one deserved it more than you.
After all the hype was over, the rest of the “Almost” team was hanging out. We made sure to fan out and meet all of the pros we could. We were all starstruck and honestly the “Almost” team were some of the nicest people I’ve ever met. It was a dream come true.
After a few more tricks were landed, the beers were chugged and the pizzas were inhaled. All was said and done and we headed out towards our hotel in Costa Mesa to get some rest.
Congatulations to Youness Armani for turning pro! Thank you Almost Skateboards and The Berrics for having us. Stay tuned for Day 2 of the trip… Volcom’s “True To This” World Premiere!