By Erik Leon
It is the final week of November, I have been steaming milk and pulling espresso shots for the last three months at my normal job in Portland, Oregon. On Friday the 27th during my shift, Bode Merrill calls me and asks if I want to join on a last minute trip to Anchorage, Alaska. To be honest, I have barely thought about going on a snowboard trip yet this season. Monday comes along, I work a sunrise shift at the Albina Press and by sundown, I'm on a redeye to Alaska. This is the first time I will strap my snowboard on to my feet for the winter.
The crew was Bode, Phil Hansen, myself, and Ted Borland behind the lens. These were my first days snowboarding for the winter, and the boys came to play right away. I was thrown right back into it, meanwhile everyone else had been warming up their legs for the past month or so. It was a bit nerve-racking jumping directly on steel a day after finishing up my seasonal coffee shop job, from lattes and bullshit conversations to push shovels and hand plants on walls. But it was nice to be back home, where I feel most comfortable: snowboarding with my friends, in a new place.
These are the things I cherish when going on city snowboard trips. The only opportunities I've had to see the world have been through snowboarding, and for that I am grateful. As a professional snowboarder, our biggest medium is to show off our snowboarding, and the ways that we are portrayed drives the viewers to the gear we use. My snowboarding is my voice, and this is where I'm going to utilize it. For these videos, I want to tie in the things that I’m into, like snowboarding, art, creation, and getting more people into snowboarding. Through creating the CORE program, I’ve been introduced to a lot of non-profit organizations that help get more kids on hill. So, the main idea of this project is to correlate the core snowboarding community to the non profit community in snowboarding.
These non-profits help break down the barriers to the snowboard world by introducing this sport to groups of children or teens who would have never had the opportunity to try such an impactful sport. I can personally say my life was changed by my introduction to snowboarding at a young age, and my goal is to help facilitate new introductions to kids across the US.
Every drop that we release will have an artist partnership and some sort of item that we’ll produce, like a reusable bag or t-shirts or whatever we feel like making using the artist's art. All proceeds from that will then go to a non-profit whose purpose is introducing snowboarding to kids.
For this first drop, we have partnered with Hoods To Woods. The Hoods to Woods Foundation is a nonprofit 501(C)3 Organization that promotes awareness of the outdoors to inner city children through snowboarding. You can donate directly here.
Corelation is proudly supported by Arbor Snowboards, Flux Bindings, 10 Barrel, The Ikon Pass & GoPro.