Dawn Of The Village—Photos and Highlights
words: Finn Westbury
photos: Liam Glass (Very Good Photo Name)
We began scheming this past summer. The Bowly was still fresh on our minds and hard drives when Krush approached us about doing an event. Yes, immediately down. Right off the bat, it was obvious that we were all on a similar wavelength. Fast forward to this week, I'm driving out to Banff just 24 hours after landing from a Beta trip to Estonia.
We moved the festivities this year to a little nook in the trees off of Goat's Eye, one of the mountains at Sunshine. A few fun facts: Dawn Of The Village was the first snowboarding event ever on Goat's Eye and the first time a rail has ever been on that mountain. Special shoutout to Blake Geis for the first official jib. Instant local status confirmed.
Dawn Of The Village came to be from a couple of different factors; My and JJ's previous event at Sunshine Village SRD The Session, and the undeniable success and impact of Snowboy Productions' Holy Bowly on the local snowboard scene following its arrival on Alberta soil in the spring of 2017.
Krush told us his usual rule of thumb: the build days equal the length of the event plus one day. For DOTV, we did things unconventionally and went with a three-day build for our four-day event. Following three long days, I had gained a newfound appreciation for park staff everywhere. Special thank you to Ben Suurallik, Mike Wood, Eric Martin, Eric Corbin, Krush, Blake Geis and everyone else who helped dig!
Sunshine in the spring can unleash all kinds of weather. Anyone who rode Holy Bowly can attest to that. Part of the reason for choosing our zone down low on Goat's Eye was the tree cover, and in general being more tucked into the mountains then the tradition parks on Great Divide. This ended up working hugely in our favour. We had more sun than not, and when it was snowing, the trees helped to the point that a little bit of precipitation was hardly an issue.
Dawn Of The Village was a melting pot for western Canadian snowboarding. We had heavy local representation. JJ was back in the hotseat, ripping turns and mellow slashes in between bouts of filming the homies. The highlight of my week was seeing JJ back on a board. Although SRD was missing the likes of Lucio DM, Kennedi Deck and Tom O'Reilly, our beloved Jack Lawrence took it upon himself to hold it down for those unable to make it. He put it down on our DOTV sign, with a blunt fakie on the top of the wood pillar, as well as boosting a one footer over the bar. Impeccable trick / SRD sweater selection was on the menu everyday for Adam Brownlie. Stefan "Taco" Alveraze and the rest of the BLP boarders took a break from the Calgary streets to destroy the set-up. When not boarding, they could be found on a well earned break in the trees, watching the madness through the branches. We had Alberta OG's of all kinds. Dwayne Weibe, Kael Hill and Mike Ruddy to name a few. Dwayne went above and beyond to paint an old snowboard to give to Krush as a token of Alberta's appreciation for his huge role in making DOTV happen. Edmonton came down in full force, repping our beloved 587 area code. Will Fraser was keeping us on our feet with a plethora of uncanny maneuvers that had us absolutely baffled in the best way possible. One of my favourite tricks came from Jack Cherniawsky when he nose pressed the snow pad to back tail the down bar. Good looks! The local Banff crew was doing the damn thing as well, with John Chew oozing style on all features in sight.
You already know cameras were out in full force. Liam Hall aka the mastermind behind PutItInTheBowl was out there filming what seemed like two angles at the same time. Fisheye on, fisheye off in the blink of an eye. Geremy Guido was on that low-key high-key tip, just casually destroying everything in his path, while Tommy Van stayed on his tech tip. Bs blunt pretzels, ollie over the front fs blunts, etc. Digital genius Colter Heard was out gathering media of the finest quality, consisting of the heavy Timebomb Trading gang. Matt Heneghan had the Dewalt and Nick Elliot was speed shaded up, which mean things were really going off. Martyn Vachon stood out with an insane gap to rail on the top pad, as well as teaming up with Brodey Wolfe for an over/under on the "X".
It was a no brainer to have Liam Glass come out and shoot photos. We've been shooting with him for years in Calgary, and have had him running through memory cards at both of The Sessions in the past years. Enjoy the gallery of Dawn Of The Village through his viewfinder.
So much amazing boarding, it would be a full fledged essay to mention everyone and everything this past week that completely blew my mind. JJ and I are feeling very grateful for everyone who came out, boarded, shot photos, videos, or even just stopped by to watch. Thank you Sunshine Village, Snowboy Productions and Rockstar Canada for linking up with us to make this happen. See you next year …?