Kicking Off 2019 at Homage

It was the coldest day of the year so far, but around 7pm at a brisk and snowy 8-ish degrees, the girls started to file into Homage ready to shred.

PHOTO 1.jpg

If you haven’t heard of Homage, it’s officially a Skateboarding Academy by day, and when we are lucky enough, like we were on Wednesday night, they open up their space for anyone to skate for a small admission fee.

PHOTO 2.jpg

Johnna, who works at Homage, saw the need for a women’s skate night and made it happen! She and John (pictured below) welcomed skaters of all levels came to skate the 3 ramps, and a few other skate obstacles. (She also very kindly cleaned my wound, and put a bandaid on my hand when I cut myself later that night - thanks again Johnna!)

John Reeves & Johnna Artis

John Reeves & Johnna Artis

It was refreshing to see such a strong turn out of all levels and all rad energy.

Some girls even came to skate quads!

PHOTO 5.jpg

If you missed this session, we’re happy to announce that there will be more Women’s sessions at Homage with the next one being Friday February 22 7pm - 10pm.

SQUARE.png

*All Photos by Dennis Williford @ Chum Media






Adrian Koenigsberg
NYC Skate Project Launch

INTENTIONAL SPACE FOR GENDER NON-CONFORMING, TRANS FOLX, NON-BINARY FOLX, & CIS WOMEN, WHO SKATE

Is the description on the Instagram page for NYC Skate Project aka NYCSP. These words meant a lot to me as I’ve been trying to find the right way to communicate that while Quell is focused on women, run by two cis women, we intend to create a space where all non cis males can not only be welcomed, but *celebrated*

When we learned that NYCSP was holding an event - we couldn’t wait to see what was in store, and our expectations were certainly exceeded.

Lacey Baker, with the assistance of Kristin Ebeling of Skate Like a Girl and Skate Witches and Brian Anderson (yes, the Brian Anderson), successfully created exactly as the Instagram described. Everything was thought through and intentional.

“NYCSP was born out of my need for community and connection. I wanted to create a space in NYC intentionally for queer folks and women to feel welcomed, to be fully self expressed, and to learn how to skate. The intimidation and hyper masculinity at skateparks is generally overwhelming; it’s refreshing to be in a space where that’s a non-issue.” - Lacey Baker

7I7A5751.jpg

When we arrived at Skate Brooklyn we were greeted at the door by well loved local skaters Jessyka Bailey and Marissa Rosewood who welcomed everyone and checked them in for the event. There were gender pronoun pins and a sign that stated,

“Inclusion is a paradox. This space exists not to exclude but to create equity as a response to systems of oppression.”

Once again I was met with the perfect phrasing to an idea I’ve been trying to explain - with Quell, we aren’t looking to exclude men, we just want more space for non cis men in skateboarding media and at the skate park.

In the first room to the left was an art display by Jeffrey Cheung of Unity Press . In the next room was a row of perfectly lined up Meow Skateboards with Lacey’s signature MOB Grip and Spitfire Wheels and all the necessary safety gear from Triple 8 pads.

The fun really began when the first wave of people arrived for instructor training. Here we introduced ourselves and took the time to learn how to facilitate learning. So we could offer a helping hand in the upcoming clinics.

It was time to put all of the knowledge shared in the room to the test during three, one hour clinics. We saw people of all genders and sexual orientations, all under one roof for the same  goal, to have fun, learn, and probably fall a lot. People who have never stepped on a board came, others came with various levels of experience.

We saw quite a few first drop ins, as well as new tricks for the more advanced skaters. Regardless of tricks, everyone left feeling accomplished, supported, and stoked. After the clinics - we wrapped up with lots of hugs and reflection.

Then, it was PARTY TIME (is it even really a party if Stevie May isn’t doing handstands?)

Permanent Wave Played and so did Witch Slap. We rounded the night out with some raffles and of course, dancing.

“Creating this space allows the community to grow and flourish in ways that seem impossible otherwise. The love and kindness flooded the space and I’m so inspired by my community, my heart is so full!”
- Lacey Baker


Thank you Lacey, The NYC Skate Project, and Skate Brooklyn for having us - we can’t wait for the next one!

*All photos by Kyle Dunn

Adrian Koenigsberg
The Skate Exchange

GROUNDBREAKING SKATE EXCHANGE SHOWCASES GLOBAL CULTURE AND CAMARADERIE OF WOMEN’S SKATEBOARDING.

The first event of its kind, the Skate Exchange in Tokyo, Japan was an iconic and perspective shifting moment for women’s skateboarding worldwide. Over the course of five days, skaters from across the globe congregated in Tokyo, Japan to take part in the Skate Exchange. The experience organized by the Women’s Skateboarding Alliance in partnership with B-Global Agency and powered by JTB set out to unite skaters across the globe for a cultural exchange but also to show the world the true essence of skateboarding. Skaters came from all over; Korea, the Philippines, Thailand, the U.S and Japan, to together experience the city and this unique event - from exploring the streets of Harajuku and Tsukiji Fish Market to skating the Komazawa skatepark and Shibuya crossing.

Skate Exchange2_Japan 2018_hannah bailey00000016.jpg

During the main public event, at Murasaki skatepark on Saturday (December 1), over 1000 skaters and spectators were in attendance, including Olympic ice skaters, Maia and Alex Shibutani, and five of the biggest Japanese TV stations. It was said to be the biggest skate event of the year at the park. The atmosphere was buzzing, with skaters as young as two rolling along to be inspired and get involved. Before the best trick contest kicked off, 33 children and youth from local schools and charities took part in a clinic supported by Levis, with pros such as Jenn Soto, Mariah Duran and Lacey Baker getting hands on to help. Spectators enjoyed the laid-back contest which included local up and coming skaters throwing down tricks alongside seasoned pros. Japanese skater Nanaka Fujisawa took the top spot but all the skaters wowed the audience and enjoyed a relaxed, fun competition, with Alexis Sablone putting down the final crowd-pleasing trick with a kickflip down the gap. Many local skaters said it was the best week of their life and something which would change women’s skateboarding in Japan and the world forever.

Skate Exchange3_Event Day Japan 2018_hannah bailey00020.jpg


The Skate Exchange has done Tokyo, but it’s only just the beginning as it looks to expand to new locations in the future bringing together more female skateboarders with the spirit of fun and friendship at the forefront of what the Skate Exchange and what skateboarding is all about.

Find out more and keep in touch at theskatexchange.com @theskatexchange

Check out the photos below!

Adrian Koenigsberg
Issue 003 Release Party

Dec 15, 2018 we threw a party at El Cortez to celebrate the release of our third magazine!
Monte played an incredible set presented by Women That Rock. Thank you so much to our sponsors who made our raffle incredible: Trophy Griptape, Low Card Magazine, Arizone Skate, Housewife Skate, Element Womens, Loo Wax and Old Blue Last Beer for the drink specials.

Check out the photos below! And get a copy of Issue 003 online now.

Photos by Pedro Hernandez

Adrian Koenigsberg
2nd Nature Skate Jam - Nov 18
unnamed-8.jpg

As the weather gets colder and open sessions & girls skate days at House of Vans seem like a distant memory, we realized that it’s time to rally the girls and get to the indoor skate spots, as few and far between as they are. So that’s exactly what we did.

Since going to 2nd Nature skatepark around this time last year, I’ve dreamt about going back, this time, unafraid of dropping in! When we reached out to Doug and 2nd Nature he was immediately stoked about our idea.

Doug linked us with Ruthless Ruthie’s mom, Georgia who made sure to rally the Majestic Skate Crew and the rest of the girls. Paired with the Jersey Girls who came through via Grit & Grace and Sk8 Babes crew coming from Connecticut - we really had a dream team of girls come through to skate.

Just a fun session of skating would have been enough in terms of having a great time but we added in two contests - why not?

1. Fastest time around the bowl: First place taken by Jordan Pascale

2. Best Trick
First place taken by Nicole Hawkins with a Nollie Back Lip
Second place by Mathilda Kotsonis with a bil ol’ boneless over the stairs

Everyone was so impressed by the level of skill in the room, but no one was surprised, because we already knew how rad everyone who came was!

Big thanks to 2nd Nature, Trophy Griptape, Low Card Magazine, Arizone Skate, Housewife Skate, Ugly Drinks, Kitu Coffee, Luna Bar and Neu Kombucha who helped make it all possible!

So many girls came up to use throughout the day letting us know that they are so used to being the only girls at the skatepark. We’re stoked to help bring the female skate community together to show the next generation of shredders that girls skate too and remind them how rad they are!

Big BIG shout out to every girl who came out and showed up, regardless of skill level. Skateboarding is fun and skateboarding is for everyone!

Check the photo recap below
Photos by @losv4s @seanbradyphoto and @mooresophia

Write up by Kristen Scalise
For more, check out the video recap from Trophy Griptape
here

Adrian Koenigsberg
EXPOSURE 2018 - As Told by Natalie of Late Skate

San Diego, Cali-

The days were hot and the nights were chilly, I was having a hard time deciding if I over packed or under packed. Under the afternoon beaming sun, I knew I would want my jeans and jacket at sundown. My first trip to Cali in my lifetime and my mission to skate was cut short by my broken arm just two weeks ago. But I was intent on not letting that ruin the trip. I set out to understand and see the heights of skating, at the all female skate competition called Exposure with my skate crew of amazing friends under our group name, Late Skate.

The Late Skate Girls

The Late Skate Girls

As we entered the Encinitas skate park for the first day of competition, some of us quickly became star stuck as we saw our whole Instagram feed standing before us. There was Noravexplora getting a line in her classic lavender attire, skating passed tweakermom, breezeana hitting a steezy grind across the park, Samarriabrevard not too far off. Here everyone was, all female skaters, pro or not, gathered to push the limits under competition circumstances.

Some of the girls I was with attended a few years ago and were quickly greeted by the friends they made last time. It was like walking into your local bar where everyone knows your name. One of my Instagram favorites came right up to my friend and they reconnected. I was so nervous to meet her, intimidated by her talent, however my boundary of self doubt was shattered by her sincere friendliness. As I tried to remain cool I realized she’s just like me, down to skate and have fun. The guard of prestige didn't exist in a place like this. Everyone shared the love of skateboarding and here everyone was welcome.

We watched the early rounds of competition, even the youngest age groups were competing at an amazing skill level. As we took a break from the spectating, we traveled through the merch area where there were numerous booths of femme powered brands like autonomy skateboards, which had extremely desirable decks, clothing, and were passing out free stickers and whoopie cushions. There wasn’t an item for sale where I was frustrated by the graphics, namely in the vein of objectifying women or violent graphics. In fact most of the merch inspired me and all the booth owners were incredibly friendly and on the buzz of excitement that emanated through the park. There were several athletic and health conscious booths that were there to help treat us skateboarders as athletes; everything from coconut matcha water to cryotherapy stations from Bones Love Milk, to a more holistic incense tent that was blazing the Palo Santo.

It was like swimming in a pool of good energy, and new friends could be anyone you met eyes with.

Lizzie Armanto

Lizzie Armanto


As we came back for the second day of the event, we prioritized seeing the Vans pro bowl competition. As we turned into the entrance of the bowl, it was an open seating arrangement of skating’s highest caliber. Glancing around the pool as people were locating seats were every pro skater you could think of; Tony Hawk, Steve Caballero, Bucky Lasek, Christian Hosoi, just to name a few, all there to support the best female skaters. Lizzie Armanto was warming up alongside Allysha Le, Nicole Hause, and Arianna Carmona amongst other notable competitors. It was an amazing moment to think what my purpose was there. Though I may not be a pro skater, I had a place at the pool. Me and my fellow girls of Late Skate are a part of the new generation of skateboarding, female skateboarding. Writing history by participating, growing, and pushing our limits in the male dominated sport.

We found space to camp out at the side of the bowl right in front of the red line that marked to not get closer as to not interfere with the skaters. I couldn’t help but wonder if the purpose of the red line was also to protect the audience from the front side airs, steep rock to fakies, and the occasional no comply where trucks raced by at speeds that could merit a painful blow to the face. It was honestly terrifying to see the skaters charging towards our direction at full speed in order to fly above the pool. I had never experienced such professional skating at such a close view. There is nothing that can compare to seeing it with your own eyes, not any instagram post, photo, or professional video, there really was energy radiating through the park.

Everyone was working on their signature runs during the practice round, bailing on the tougher stunts. I couldn't help but wonder if my startled reaction from them flying by my face was contributing to their bails. I had to retain composure as to not affect their run, or so it seemed. I was skeptical that they would complete a full run during the competition, seeing as it looked challenging for them; but when the pressure was on, so we're they; the mark of a professional.

During the competition, the women were in their own world. I could tell by their laser locked eyes, intent on focusing on the part of the bowl they were aiming for. Each of their four 40 second runs flew by as they cruised through the runs and had time to freestyle after they landed their planned tricks. My favorite was when Kody Tamanaha landed several slashes, one long crisp board slide, a frontside Smith grind revert out, to a shove onto the coping. This was another moment that expanded my knowledge of what was possible in a bowl.

It’s always an incredible moment to see someone so in the zone, it doesn't matter if you are watching or not. At one point, one if the contenders shot right in front of me to do a hand plant, it was as if everything froze in time only to resume, as I heard her exhale after letting go to drop back into the deep end.

IMG_5792.jpg

As the final moments of the competition came to a close, winners were announced, I had an overwhelmed and satisfied feeling. I was not expecting to see everyone I look up to in skateboarding in two days, and none the less meet them, become friends with them, and be front row for a competition by my favorite skaters. Late Skate and I returned to the street portion of the park to sesh on the same ground as everyone who had completed that weekend. We were all so abuzz of inspiration. We left the park with a fervor, a sweet disposition to skate even better after seeing everyone compete at the event, with the newfound thought- that maybe next time that could be one of us.

Adrian Koenigsberg
Quell Bridge Bomb + Pizza Party

Last month, we took advantage of the warm weather and rode over the Williamsburg Bridge to Rizzo’s for some pizza. Our incredible friends Jacob Pritchard and Shelly Simon took these kick ass photos of the occasion.

Adrian Koenigsberg
Slice of Quell Skateboarding

A while back we worked with Mango Visuals to create a short film on Quell.
Linda and Dan were so special and it was awesome to collaborate on such a fun project.


Special Thanks to: Becky Burt at Pink Pineapple Surf – Skate Sean Brady and Tracy Barton-Herishen at Jersey Shore GRO Shot and Edited by: Dan Natale and Linda Pluhar Producers: Adrian Koenigsburg, Linda Pluhar, and Dan Natale Girl Skate Session organized by: Pink Pineapple Surf Skaters: Victoria Clement Haily Durovich Jill Carlock Julia Coan Allie Frank Maya Volpacchio Seton Iglay Ella Condon Zoe Herishen Lily Brady Amelia Stanley Emily McEntee Kimberly Jachimek Abby Meberg Scarlett Scillia Cat McKiever Leah Alberto Audrey Iglay Belle Alvarado

Adrian Koenigsberg
Issue 002 Release Party

On March 3rd 2018 we threw a party for the release of our second magazine at Magick City in Brooklyn. Sponsored by Old Blue Last Beer. We premiered a film ‘A Slice of Quell’ by Mango Studios. All photos by Pedro Hernandez

Adrian Koenigsberg
The Power of Girls Skateboarding in India

It's so exciting to see people all across the world coming together through skateboarding. I especially love companies like Vans, who use their resources to balance the playing field for women in skateboarding. If you aren't aware- Vans recently announced an equal prize purse to men for the Combi Contest this March.

Additionally, they're planning 100 mobile skate clinics in major cities around the world to teach women how to skate. Many of those locations are listed on their site here

I wanted to share on our site the full clip Vans recently put out with Atita Verghese and Lizzie Armanto. It's an awesome little look into the developing skate community of India, and time and time again how great it is to see girls getting together for love the love skateboarding.

Adrian Koenigsberg
THE START

So we tried this once, this blog of sorts...and we weren't very good at it.
But we're making a lot of changes here at Quell and I can't wait to update you on them all.

My name is Adrian, and I'm the founder of Quell Skateboarding. I've loved skateboarding since I was thirteen years old.

When I was younger, and wanted to start skating, I didn't see other girls skating on TV or in magazines or have other girls to skate with. I didn't know where to even start looking. I never felt like I had a group of girls to turn to and never pushed my love further then the occasional skate outing.

I grew up and realized there were so many girls out there who were absolutely crushing it, but no one knew about them. The visibility of men in the skateboarding industry just is not the same my fellow girls experience. Quell was founded to give a voice and a platform to the amazing community of women skateboarders all across the world.

We started August 25th by launching our magazine into the world. A beautiful 60 page full color book, featuring submissions from all over the world...literally.  We interviewed Amelia Brodka and Cali Kelsay of Exposure Skate and Skate Rising. We shipped copies to Australia, Sweden, Canada, and all across the US. We hosted a party and had 75 friends just celebrate women in skateboarding. To be able to have a skate magazine featuring exclusively women skateboarders in my hands is the stuff thirteen year old me would have thought was pretty cool.

It's been an insanely exciting couple months for us since then, and I truly feel that the future of women's skateboarding looks so bright.

We're trying. We're growing. And we can't wait to share.

Bye for now,

Adrian

Adrian Koenigsberg