The old silos property on Jackson Street is getting decked out for this year’s Artwalk on Friday with a skateboarding showcase and art exhibit.
One of several additions to the June event, “Against the Grain” is a concept brought to life by Mike Kammeyer and his wife, Rachael Eastman.
The Pullman couple owns 6 Cents Skateboarding, which they operate out of their home. The idea to form a skateboarding team began in 2010 following a competition at the Lentil Festival with Eastman’s son, Daniel, 12, participating.
Kammeyer said he wanted to give young skaters a community and mentoring program they could come to as not everyone embraces their activity.
“They’re good kids, they just like to skate and they’re really good at it, and it’s a difficult activity, it really is,” he said. “I’ve really pushed myself a lot this last year so I could be as good as Daniel.”
“Against the Grain” will not only highlight the skills of the 6 Cents team, but also those of skateboarders around the region Kammeyer invited to the event.
“I’ve got people coming from all around the region,” he said, including Kamiah’s Chris Weddle, the inventer of the mute grab trick named for his nonverbal condition. “It’s just a part of the skateboard history and it’s cool for the kids to have someone like that around.”
Skaters will show Artwalk gatherers their tricks on a half-pipe, quarter-pipe and small street section. The event runs 3-10 p.m. Friday.
The soundtrack for the boarding and the video will be provided by five bands: Random Noise, Mison Bones and Illuminatrz, all of Pullman, Lithium.ID of Hayden, Idaho, and Kronos and the Time Lords of Moscow.
“I have more people participating than I anticipated, so I needed more space so everyone could skate,” said Kammeyer.
The former Latah County Grain Growers building will serve as the Grain House Gallery where artistically crafted and screen-printed skate decks will be showcased along with other works of art.
Thad Froio, a tattoo artist at Untamed Art in Moscow — also an event sponsor — is donating an art piece to the exhibit.
In 2010, Froio crafted a 15-foot wooden tyrannosaurus — or Palouse-o-saurus to some — and then burned it in the town of Palouse.
These days, however, Froio is making commissioned pieces — none of which his buyers want burned.
On display Friday will be a stegosaurus piece made primarily from pieces of broken skateboards. The proceeds will go toward 6 Cents’ efforts to become a nonprofit.
“I sat with Mike and told him the idea I had,” said Froio. “He just put the word out and skaters, they can’t part with their broken decks, they don’t know what to do with them.”
He ended up using 27 pieces of broken boards to make plates, spikes, feet and a skull for his prehistoric creation. He now has more decks than he can use.
“I skated all through college, and I loved it,” Froio said. “But now I’m getting old and fat and less bouncy. Plus, I’m a tattoo artist, so I can’t really afford to mess up my wrist.”
Kammeyer said the team also hopes to play a video compilation along the side of a grain silo highlighting tricks performed over the past six months edited by 17-year-old Pullman skater Austin Grossman.
“I had a bunch of footage from earlier, and I guess (Kammeyer) thought we would make an even bigger video,” said Grossman. “It’s really stressful. I didn’t even start editing until probably Saturday night. I’ve been up past three every single night working on it.”
Brandon Macz can be reached at (208) 882-5561, ext. 238, or by email at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @BrandonMacz.