A Conversation With Tommy & Christian About "Snowboarding During a Pandemic"
by Maxim Kennis
Tommy and Christian started off the month of October by heading over to New Jersey for a couple of days to visit Big SNOW American Dream (@BigSnowAD) North America's first real-snow, indoor snow park. If you ask me, nothing screams American Dream more than crashing at a friends place for a couple of days, snowboarding inside of a mall and eating pizza. I reached out to Tommy and Christian to see if it lived up to the expectation.
How are you guys doing? What have you been up to lately?
T- Pretty good. I‘ve just been skateboarding. Also I was a janitor at this grocery store near me, but I just quit. Haha. Oh and I started college.
C- I’ve been good, just moved from Utah back to New Hampshire. I’ve kind of just been doing that.
Would you say that snowboarding indoors really is your definition of the American Dream?
T- Maybe. Kinda depends, but ya. Only if you go to “Piazza di Pizza” after.
C- Unsure about the American Dream but it was something, super fun. It would be a lot better not during the pandemic... but for people in that area that don’t have access to a resort, that place could be huge. A lot of opportunity for a larger spectrum of people to start riding. I think it’s really cool.
Was this your first time snowboarding indoors? How does it compare to regular snowboarding?
T- Ya it was my first time. It's kind of like an indoor skatepark, where snowboarding outside is more like skateboarding outside. If that helps. The crazy part was that the temperature outside was like summer but inside was below freezing.
C - First time riding indoors. Very fun but not the same as being outside. There was no wind, that was awesome. It was also super humid. It’s limited by space and the lack of natural terrain. Don’t get me wrong, they crushed, but it’s not the same. It’s prime time for locals or off season riding. I’ll 100% be going back.
What measures were in place to minimize the spread of the virus?
C- Well the mall is named “American Dream“ and that was pretty much empty. So the only people around are riding Big Snow. They took temps before you go in. That kinda gave me anxiety hahaha. Some plastic sheets dividing up some parts of room and arrows on the ground. In the riding area it was a little more relaxed. Occasionally someone got “yelled” at for not wearing masks properly but it was more a personal responsibility in the riding area.
New Jersey Pizza, how was it? Any spot to recommend?
T - Only place we went was “Piazza di Pizza”. I would eat there everyday.
How have you guys been keeping busy during this Pandemic?
T - I've been working, doing school, skateboarding, crafts, spending time with friends, relearning music, TV :)
C- It’s been wild. I had my girlfriend to hang out with, so I didn’t go insane. We did a lot of baking, movies, went camping a few times which was rad. I did a lot of painting and just hanging at the house. We tried to be as responsible as we could. Lots of just hanging at house.
What do you guys have planned for the upcoming season?
T - Learning how to snowboard haha. An old friend of mine got paralyzed this Summer, I want to do a fundraiser at our home mountain on his birthday in march, I reached out to the park staff, I’ll have to try the owners though.
C- Hopefully the same as every year. Work and snowboard. Especially now that I’m back in NH. Winter can be crazy here. Not a lot to do and it gets cold. Hopefully film some more with Connor Lowe and my New England friends.
Christian, what makes your most hyped about being back in New Hampshire?
C- Well getting back for the Fall was huge. It’s the best time of year here. I don’t know? I’m hyped to be near my friends and family. Doing some doing some classic New England stuff.
Tommy, how was Hood this Summer? How did it compare to previous years?
T - I had a great time, I felt like I was actually snowboarding, past years I have felt like I was walking on the moon. The camps and the mountain are taking a new direction, and I like it. I miss the videos though.
Christian, I saw that Signal recently released the 2021 Fooj board that you designed, could you talk to us a bit about that? What’s up with Fooj and how did the board ride?
C- First off Jake, Dave and Marc are the best, and I’m super thankful for them letting me design a board. The board is pretty much a little art project. Went through a couple versions and colors. Eventually I ended up with the blue flower and ended up loving it. This was my first time doing something like this so I was a little reserved. If I have another opportunity to do this it will be easier. I really understand the process now. As for the board; It’s soft, springy, all around park board. It rides really well. I picked a classic round popsicle stick shape for it. I love it. If you want one it’s up on signal snowboards website. You can buy it on a payment plan so hopefully that makes it more accessible for people.
Tommy, what’s good with @NoiseOnline.XYZ? Any new stuff coming?
T - Okay, so we made a small video. It just released today. Going to pause noise for a year though. I started it for my friends and I, but it's gone a different direction, a more solo mode. Going to work on some things, maybe a photo booklet and hopefully another video, more clothes too.
Here it is :
Both of you guys were riding our Magnum binding in our new Icon colorway. As you guys already know, we have new molds and redesigned our whole product line from the ground up for 20/21. How did the bindings feel?
T - The bindings are simple, and functional. They are comfortable, and work well, you don't have to think about them, you are able to trust that they're going to do what they are supposed to.
C- The bindings are so good. I love them. They felt really responsive. Perfect mix of support and flexibility. I like getting low to the ground while riding. I feel like they help with the extra support while allowing my boot to flex properly. They’re easy to get the perfect fit to my boot. Another plus is they hold a nice heel edge without forward lean, which is important for just riding around.
Do you have any special thanks or shout-outs to make?
T - Thank you to all of my friends, I love you. PLEASE VOTE. NO ROOM FOR HATE
C - Big shouts to the friends and family, Kelly, Jake, Marc, Dave, Jason, And yourself. Anyone that has helped me board, sponsors, Snooze, Colt, Jmo, Peter and Vantage Vintage. A huge thanks to Connor Lowe and his family for letting us stay with them while riding Big Snow.