By Joel Patterson
Photos by Liam Ferguson and Joel Patterson
NYC--This past weekend Quiksilver owned New York City ... or at least they got as close as possible in a city that’s famous for never sleeping. Action sports’ biggest brand broke new ground, officially opening the first ever boardsports store in what’s possibly the most visited, most visible, and most expensive rental areas on Earth--at 42nd Street and 7th Avenue in Times Square. The 3,300-square-foot Quiksilver Boardriders’ Club, which features a wall of video screens and a ceiling made out of surfboards, was closed to the public Friday morning, June 19, for a Hawaiian-style blessing that will hopefully bring the shop success.
Quiksilver flew several dozen employees, high-ranking officials, and professional athletes out for the weekend’s festivities, which also included a skate demo/concert on Saturday aboard the USS Intrepid (a decommissioned WWII-era aircraft carrier docked in the Hudson River at 46th Street), and an after party at the recently opened and already very trendy Coral Room on 29th. On hand for the weekends celebrating were CEO Bob McKnight; President Bernard Mariette, Gregg Solomon, and the whole marketing crew; snowboarders Todd Richards and Danny Kass; surfers Danny Fuller, Dylan Graves, and Lisa Anderson; skaters Tony Hawk, Omar Hassan, Chad Fernandez, Natas Kaupas, and Reese Forbes; and members of the cast of MTV’s latest reality show Surf Girls.
Saturday’s grand event, which was scheduled to kickoff around 1 p.m., fell victim to New York weather. According to every cabbie in the city, “It’s rained 30 of the last 50 days in the city,” but despite a steady downpour for most of the afternoon, 3,000 people armed with umbrellas turned up to stroll the old warship’s flight deck, marvel at the tarp-covered vert ramp sitting on the bow 68 feet above the Hudson, and imagine what could have been. At an invite-only cocktail party in a state room under Intrepid’s decks, Quiksilver’s Taylor Wisenand said in regards to the rain, “You can’t control the weather, but I’m happy anyway.”
And he should be. Not only did Quik provide the world’s most famous city with its best events of the weekend, but it took a step closer to solidifying the action-sports industry’s position as the highly influential leaders they are, rather than trends waiting to pass.