The son of a skateboarder, Spencer Semien was on a skateboard himself by the time he was three years old.
“All of a sudden, skateboarding became his passion, ” says his mother, Marla Sneed.
As any parent knows, a child’s passion can be quite expensive and Spencer needed a part-time job to support his skateboarding activities. He already had an interest in computers and, in fact, had built a personal web site, so building one devoted to skateboarding was the logical next step. With the help of his mother and a Denver-area skateboard shop, the 11-year old got his site up and running. The official launch date was Oct. 21 of last year.
First and foremost, the site markets skateboarding equipment to intermediate-level skaters and higher. Skaters can purchase pre-built complete decks (that’s a fully assembled skateboard) as well as individual parts and accessories, everything from wheels, to grip tape, (intended to give the skater a surer foothold on the board), to skateboard repair tools, to the latest in safety equipment.
And those that switch from skateboarding in the warm weather to snowboarding in the winter haven’t been neglected; the site also provides a snowboarding section with a selection of snowboards and protective gear.
In addition to serving as an equipment supply headquarters, the site provides a full range of skateboarding services. Site visitors can access a technical support page, which provides information on which skateboard might best serve their needs, or study (and purchase) plans for building a skateboarding ramp of their own.
Site visitors can access a technical support page, which provides information on which skateboard might best serve their needs, or study (and purchase) plans for building a skateboarding ramp of their own.
For today’s skaters, the site makes use of video technology. Video clips allowing aspiring skaters to study tricks performed by people Spencer has chosen as “worthy of being sponsored” by his website are represented. After many days of viewing “sponsor me” videos, a select few were chosen to receive recognition and free merchandise from this site.
The site also caters to visitors who aren’t skaters, such as parents of skaters or those who want to become more knowledgeable about a friend’s favorite pastime. A history section details the evolution of skateboarding, from the early 1900s to the present day, with the focus being on the evolution of the actual skateboard and skateboarding competitions, but also taking care to address the issues that have plagued the sport through the years, specifically, issues dealing with safety.
As hard as it might be for today’s corps of skaters to believe, there was a time when no one thought about putting on a helmet and protective padding before getting on a skateboard. And in the late ‘70s, many public skateboard parks were shut down because of liability issues. Rather than whitewash all these issues, the site points them out.
By perhaps clearing up some misconceptions about skateboarding, this site seems to be working to increase its bottom line, while embarking on enhancing the growth of the sport.
For this reason alone, the site is something Spencer Semien and his mother should be very proud of.
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