|(Posted 1/23/2005) |
By Kelly Wilson for Get Out Arizona *. Edited by Josh Rabinowitz for SkateboardDirectory.com
Extreme sports have moved from the sidelines to the forefront thanks in part to renowned skateboarder Tony Hawk *'s Boom Boom Huck Jam Tour.
“I thought it was time that our sports could be a headliner of a tour,’’ says Hawk, 36. “Every time that we did them publicly, it was always in an exhibition format and it was always this sort of sideshow to a bigger event like a football halftime show or a concert tour where they would have our sports in the parking lot.’’
The tour, which debuted in 2002 *, features some of the world's biggest names in skateboarding, BMX and motocross.
“It was a pretty loose idea and after doing one year, we refined it,’’ Hawk says of the tour. “We've gotten much more elaborate in our routines. ... If anyone has any preconceived notions about what they're going to see, they're going to be pleasantly surprised.’’
The tour sold out several arenas last year.
“Extreme sports are on the rise,’’ Hawk says. “(They've) gotten so much media coverage. People have been disheartened with team sports. Ten years ago, if you told someone you were a professional skateboarder, they would not believe that that's actually an occupation.
‘‘Nowadays if you tell them you're a professional skateboarder, they get excited and they're interested. They ask if you're in the X Games. They ask if you compete. There's more of an acceptance level that we've never had before.’’
Parker, a 31-year-old BMX rider who divides his time between Gilbert and Pennsylvania *, says he initially wanted to break into the skateboarding world.
“I really wanted to be a skateboarder but I only had, like, a 20-by-20 piece of cement to skateboard on, so that was short lived,’’ he says. “I ended up riding bikes because you can ride those in the dirt better.
‘‘One of my friends had a bike and I saw him do a 360 one day on it and it was incredible. It was the coolest thing I ever saw. I ended up getting a bike sometime that year and I haven't put it down since.’’
While Parker continues to compete, Hawk — who has three sons (ages 3 to 12) — has retired from competition. But he has enough projects to keep him busy between the tour, appearances on MTV *'s “Viva La Bam” and his Tony Hawk Underground video games, which have become hot sellers.
Parker has one more goal to achieve before he retires his bike — and it's not to create his own video game.
“There's a big push to put (freestyle) bike riding in the Olympics in 2008,” he says. “I'd like to stick around and see if that happens.’’
This article was originally entitled "Earth shakers Tony Hawk brings extreme sports tour to Glendale Arena" and was found at http://www.getoutaz.com/events/hawk0113.shtml
Search this site for more about Boom Boom Huck Jam Enters Fourth... *