Photos: Cole Martin
Words: Justin Cafiero
As a mysterious hashtag surfaced early last week, people began to wonder what exactly the hell was going on. The Loon Project quickly became one of the most talked about events in recent memory, with tons of clips and photos flooding Instagram.
The idea started when Krush Kulesza, head honcho at Snowboy Productions, started the Holy Bowly event back in 2011. There were always these cool looking, unique transition features at Bowly, so the thought of adding tubes or jersey barriers to them clearly became the next logical step. With the core idea being to try and evolve the typical jib park, Krush called up Scott Stevens and got him onboard, along with the crew at Loon, as well as Capita. After a huge amount of scribbles and doodles on napkins and post-it notes, the idea began to take shape and was dubbed as The Projects.
The next step was to invite the riders for this next-level setup, focusing mostly on the location and tapping into the seemingly massive contingent of East Coast rippers that call the area home. With the aim of picking about twenty people for this photo and video session, it was a massive success, with the likes of Mike Rav, Cole Navin, Ian Hart, Marcus Rand, and many more East Coast locals answering the call throughout the week. With the addition of some other riders who were able to make the trip, plus some filmers and photographers, the crew was set and the plan was locked.
Choosing Loon was an easy decision for Krush, as he’s been involved in events in the area for years. “It’s a similar vibe out here, compared to the Northwest,” Krush elaborates, “the vibe is really good, it always feels appreciated, plus I broke my arm in the parking garage here back in 2004, so there’s a lot of memories, and just a bit more maple syrup.”
Designing the course was the first huge hurdle to leap. Starting with a Holy Bowly-esque pocket, the design grew from there up the hill. Scott Stevens had created a bunch of napkin drawings, as well as Norton from Loon providing his thoughts via post-it note. From that corner feature, the setup grew up-hill, consisting of more flat lines and plenty of options. Similar to a skate plaza, it’s got a ton of variables and fun transitions, gaps, hips, and rails strewn about, but in a well thought out manner, allowing for a ton of creativity.
The Project can best be described as a private photo and video shoot, while still maintaining the goal of having as many local riders as possible. The first day is a stress test of sorts in order to push the limits and capacities of the park, make tweaks and changes, as well as obtain feedback. After that, the crew can be expanded from the initial twenty invites to friends, local rippers, and more. The resulting feeling is not of a stuffy, private VIP party, but instead a gathering of like-minded individuals who want to get out, ride an innovative course, and progress freestyle riding without risking life and limb. You might not have been able to make it out, but the hope is that a friend or someone else you knew did.
Browse the full gallery to see just a small sampling of what went down, and stay tuned for the full edit which is sure to be absolute insanity, dropping tomorrow only on TWSNOW.com.
Special thanks to Snowboy Productions, Loon Mountain, Capita, Coal, Diecutstickers.com, and Crab Grab for making it all happen.