Despite the Stolen Trailer and $10K in Lost Merchandise, 6th Annual All Nations Skate Jam Still a Success

Despite the Stolen Trailer and $10K in Lost Merchandise, 6th Annual All Nations Skate Jam Still a Success

Cliff Matias

As we reported on Tuesday, the All Nations Skate Jam trailer was stolen out of a parking lot in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and along with it went $10,000 worth of Vans, skateboards and clothing.While you would think that would be enough to cast a pall over the event at Gathering of Nations, as evidenced by these photos the Jam was still a success.

Nibwaakaawin (Wisdom), a non-profit organization who’s mission stated on their site states their desire to "foster creativity, build courage, enable cultural identity and pride, and promote non-violent and healthy physical activity through skateboarding," hosted its 6th Annual All Nations Skate Jam in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  The Jam, which coincides with the Gathering of Nations, is also the official launch of the Vans Pendleton Limited Shoe.

Vans Pendleton line

Vans has developed a line of Pendleton shoes exclusively for Nibwaakaawin’s fundraising efforts. These shoes premiered for the first time at the 2010 All Nations Skate Jam and sold out within hours. This year, within the first hours of  the Grand Entry at the Gathering on April 28, hundreds of Native youth could be seen walking around the event sporting their special Vans. J

The Skate Jam, which took place Saturday and Sunday at Los Altos Skate Park and attracted over 300 skaters from as far way as Canada, was a roaring success.  Denise Lenahan, a 40-year old Ute and mother of two teenage boys, doesn’t just accompany  them to the Jam each year—she competes.

“ I love it, the Jam gives sponsors opportunities to see Native American skaters doing their thing and allows me to bond with my boys in a Native setting” said Denise.

The event organizer Todd Harder, who remained upbeat even after the trailer containing many of the Vans, skateboards and clothing went missing, said, “It’s great to see Native youth being positive and making a mark in a wonderful healthy sport."

For 2012 Nibwaakaawin plans on hosting a total of four Native Skate Jams across Indian Country, with events planned for Idaho,  Northern California, Redlake Minnesota, and Oklahoma.

It seems that no matter what happens, the All Nations Skate Jam keeps rolling.

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