Bird Power

Shannon Dunn’s P!Jamma Party hypes up women’s snowboarding.

The Nixon JibFest, Red Bull Heavy Metal, the Dragon Air Force Tour–there’re plenty of events these days designed for riders to get their shred on in front of a bounty of cameras and film crews, to throw down without having to deal with the B.S. of the typical contest format. There’s just one problem–the participants are 99.8-percent dude. ’Cause we’re pretty sure that more than just people with XY chromosomes partake in the joy of snowboarding, there’s an obvious question to pose–what about the ladies?

Well, that’s what female freestyle legend Shannon Dunn-Downing asked herself in the summer of 2002, and the answer was the P!Jamma Party, an event she put on at Northstar-at-Tahoe on March 25—28, 2003. “I thought it’d be really fun to get the top women snowboarders together to just ride, push each other, and get some media exposure,” she says. “It’s really tough for girls to shoot with the heavyweight photogs and filmers–sometimes it seems like most go out with the girls as a last resort. I wanted to give the women the opportunity to get the exposure they deserve.”

So there you have it–an event for the women, by the women. Female supershreds like Torah Bright, Janna Meyen, Erin Comstock, and Annie Boulanger were on hand to slaughter the Northstar jibs and jumps–all especially designed for the participants’ optimum fun. “I had a good time riding and getting to know everyone better,” says Erin Comstock. “I do feel that if photographers aren’t being paid to shoot girls, then they always have something more important to be doing–so this event was great.”

The ladies performed in front of the lenses of the legendary Jon Foster, Vianney Tisseau, Dean “Blotto” Gray, the 411 Video Magazine staff, and a few television film crews. “As far as this winter goes, I’ll just have to ask everyone to see if they want to do it again,” says Shannon. “It was so much fun–just good times.”–J.S.