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Vans brings skateboarding spirit to Seoul

Sept 16,2017
Visitors listen to a lecture on skateboard photography by Anthony Acosta, photographer at skateboard magazine Thrasher, at Layer 57 in eastern Seoul on Sept. 15. [VANS]
Streetwear brand Vans is known for its style inspired by the active lifestyle of southern California, with sneakers, hoodies and pants that are not only fashionable but also perfect for active outdoor sports, especially skateboarding. To spread its sporty spirit to Seoul, Vans began a two-day event called “House of Vans” in a space packed with music, art, sports and street culture at Common Ground and Layer 57, both in Seongsu-dong in eastern Seoul, on Friday.

As skateboarding has been selected as an official sport at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, “House of Vans” highlights the many aspects of culture that skateboarding has influenced around the world, and provides seminars from experts for local skaters looking for an in-depth understanding of the history of the sport.

Since there are not many parks in Korea for skaters to freely enjoy their hobby, never mind open seminars or officially sponsored competitions where enthusiasts come together, this weekend’s event is sure to be a major event in the skateboarding community. The two venues will open space for the skate community of Seoul to express their love for the sport, as well as meet others.

Aside from a photo exhibition that will be on display at both locations, a video session and talks with Anthony Acosta, a photographer from the world-renowned skateboarding magazine Thrasher, Saturday’s event also features a chance for skateboarders to flaunt their skills. During the “Vans Stoop Series Contest,” contestants can compete by showing off their skills within a designated time limit. The winner will take home prizes and money.

Another competition will be “Trick for Cash,” in which contestants have to compete by flaunting their skateboarding skills using a number of obstacles, such as a bench and a fire hydrant. The skater who pulls off the most impressive tricks will be provided with cash on the spot.

“‘House of Vans’ is a gathering for everyone,” said the organizers. “It’s a must-visit festival for anyone who loves skateboarding. Come and enjoy the off-the-wall spirit.”

BY YOON SO-YEON [yoon.soyeon@joongang.co.kr]

Common Ground and Layer 57 are both a 5-minute walk from Konkuk University station, lines No. 2 and 7, exit 6. Contestants can sign up for the skateboarding competition on site starting from 12:00 p.m. at Common Ground on Saturday. The first contest starts at 2 p.m.