I owe my knowledge and participation in Slappy Sundays this year to John Grigley, a pro skater from the 80’s, and a really nice guy. For a long time I tried to keep the NYC Skateboarding meetup.com group active. The organizer for that, Spencer, got out of skateboarding and named several skaters as assistant organizers to the group including me. I tried to post meetups regularly, and I’ve met some good people through that group including my good friend Julian. Going into this season I didn’t think I’d do much with the meetup group from a variety of reasons. Luckily, Spencer also named John as an assistant organizer and in March I saw him post like ten Slappy Sundays in a row. All it stated was 3 pm every Sunday at Astor Square. I went to the first one and had a blast. So thanks Mr. Grigley for letting me know about Slappy Sundays and making my skate world expand so much this year.
One great thing is through this weekly skate session I’ve met my now good friend Simon Heath, and got to know Sam Parks a lot better. There are people that go every week, and I enjoy skating with Ronnie Seward, Luke, Gizmo, Erick Colon, JR, Mike Burrill, Ray Llanos, Rick Sulz and many more. I enjoy all the skaters I’ve met at Slappy Sundays, I’m just bad with names so if I didn’t name you I’m sorry! Alex Corporan has helped promote it, and has really welcomed new comers like me to the scene.
A slappy is an old school trick to basically do a grind without ollieing into it. The original Slappy Sunday started in San Diego awhile back. It was geared to older skaters and meant for having fun regularly once a week. I believe Alex Corporan knew the California group and asked them to start it here. On my vacation to San Diego I checked out the original one and they have a really good spot for their Sundays.
Since spring the Slappy Sunday’s in NYC have varied in size from a few people to over 30 people. Some early ones were covered online at Skateboarder and Transworld I believe. Astor Square is a nice spot, yes it is simply a metal curb on a street, but the area has so many people walking through it. You see super models, weirdos, and there is endless entertainment or encounters. After the session most go to the bar Motor City in the LES, and more people simply go to the bar. So having a social after the sessions is really nice too.
Many times after the Astor Square session, we would venture off from there and look for spots. On one Sunday with a lot of people we went toward the west side highway. I remember because of the gay pride parade a street was blocked off, and we skated a good curb cut without worrying about traffic. Simon Heath, Sam Parks, and I regularly skated after the Astor Square sessions. Our first mission we went all the way down to Wall Street. I got enough footage that day to make my one of my first edits. Also the three of us, and Ronnie Seward started skating other sessions during the week. I’m skating more this year than since I came back from my injury a little over three years ago.
I wanted to write a post on Slappy Sunday because our session on November 3rd in my opinion was special. Less than a week after Hurricane Sandy a lot of us came together for the session, the picture above is from that session. Notice all the smiles on the skaters’ faces including the big grin on my face. I’ve been affected by hurricane Sandy because my library was ruined and I’m working down there in a limited capacity of a book mobile. Others in the group had their own stories. Skaters came from Statin Island, Long Island, and Lower Manhattan so several were without power and so forth. The first five of us there were chatting and then Ronnie Seward comes cruising down and just started to skate. He skates fast and has a super good frontside slappy. So he got us all going. We skated a good hour and a half. Gizmo, who I haven’t seen skate because of an injury, skated fast and good. Every skater has sessions they remember and I think for all of us this is one of them. For me, I finally had the guts to hit the ‘jersey barrier’ with more speed to get a better wall ride. I had a lack of sleep that day, and it took me a little bit to warm up, but soon I was amped, and I could tell others were too. I was trying a trick on the curb and I slid out awkwardly. I got up and these people passing by gave me encouragement. I think everyone was happy to be there, and skating was an escape from the current hardships related to the hurricane stuff.
On the last note, Slappy Sundays NYC is rad, it’s as simply as that.