coastal british columbia  

A blast from the past  
70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong   


Wee Ming Wong - the bowl they called the Grapevine, Skateboard Palace, late 70's - Photo:Rob Nurmi
 

Wee Ming Wong - invert in the bowl they called the Grapevine at the Skateboard Palace in the late 70's. Picture by Rob Nurmi.

A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 

Fast forward 20 plus years and these neglected photos are now my precious possession from back in the day as I didn't really care about pics and what little history there was. My parents couldn't afford hockey, summer camps or all that other stuff most kids do and besides, all I wanted to do was skate. It was a favorite pastime, it kept me out of trouble and you know what? At 42 going on 43 years old, it's still keeping me out of TROUBLE! HAHAHA!!!

Skateboarder Magazine Vol. 5 No. 6 January 1979
 

These pictures are from the January 79 issue of the Skateboarder Magazine. I have scanned the pages of the mag. for you to see and added a brief description. Here in Canada, a small group of us in East Van. paralleled the boys in Dogtown as this was the beginning of Canadian vert skating history. The new movie Lords of Dogtown and the documentary Z Boys has brought back a lot of smiles and sweet memories.
Skateboarder Magazine Vol. 5 No. 6 January 1979
 
Skateboarder Magazine Vol. 5 No. 6 January 1979
 

Skateboarder Magazine Vol. 5 No. 6 January 1979 Jim Goodrich of Skateboarder Magazine came up to Canada to cover the 1978 Annual Canadian Amateur Championship. The following 4 pictures is what's inside the mag. This was huge Canadian skateboarding news in that era.

Canadian legend Niko Weis, page 54 One of the best skaters of that time, Niko used to dazzle everyone with a wide variation of slides and other moves. It seemed like every time we skated, we saw something new from him. A local pioneer in Vancouver vert skating history.

That's me on page 55 A quote from Jim Goodrich "Most outsiders aren't even aware that there is skating talent in this part of he world, Wee Ming Wong, Nelson Park". PD at Skull Skates made a poster of this and was also featured in his video, Resist Control.

Skateboarder Magazine Vol. 5 No. 6 January 1979
 

Competition write up by Russ Howell, page 56: Russ Howell as emcee with CSA president Monty Little in the background and Russ Howell doing the handstand.

And last but not least page 57: If you can read he fine print, Kevin Harris finished 1st in Junior Freestyle and Alan Harrison also 1st in the Men's Freestyle category. Both are still skating today.

Skateboarder Magazine Vol. 5 No. 6 January 1979
 


 
26 years late! Haven't seen this picture till now as Monty Little have been hiding this from me for 26 years! I have been hounding him for the last year and now finally have it! Let me see, Bennett trucks, Powerflex multi colored wheels, Sims 8.5 inch board, Cooper hockey elbow pads, Rector knee pads, Addidas runners, Levis cut offs, unknown knee high socks, maybe Rector gloves, shirt from Reno Nevada and a dude at 15 years old. This shit is coming around full circle, however still waiting for the shorts and socks to come back!
Photo by Jim Goodrich when he was here doing the Skateboarder 79 article.

This was the poster made up by PD at Skull Skates. This picture was in 1979 issue of Skateboarder and in the DVD Resist Control.
 

A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 
A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 
A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 

A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 

These Skateboard Palace pictures were from an unknown person who wanted to photograph skateboarding. He was there for a couple of weeks and took these pictures and gave me copies. The Skateboard Palace was a neat indoor park that was poorly designed compared to today's standards. If I recall correctly, the concrete finish was rough, almost like a broombrush finish. I still recall wiping out and having my pads dragged out of position losing major skin! However, we ripped it and thanks to that, after a 24 year hiatus, I'd like to think I still possess some of those skills. Unfortunately, I think it was closed down due to fire regulations but I do believe it is buried under a high school in Burnaby close to the Bonsor Skatepark.

A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 
A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 
A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 


These 2 colored photos were taken by Nurmi at the Skateboard Palace around the late 79-80's. He was and still is a photographer/skater. His son Rich is a very talented skater and is a pleasure to skate with and watch. However, this particular board was my favorite during this era and miraculously is still in my possession and in working order. For the longest time it was used as a moving device for large and heavy objects. The Hand Plant/Invert was one of the major moves of the 70's invented by Bobby Valdez of California. According to PD at Skull Skates, I was popping them out at the Skateboard Palace a week after it was seen in the Skateboarder Magazine. Gotta like the shorts and socks!
A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 
A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 

A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 
A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 

2 more pictures of the Nelson Park Halfpipe were from an school friend who was into photography at that time. It was a huge ramp with a sticky rubberized coating that was approximately 10 or 11 feet high with no flat bottom. Perhaps this is why old school dudes aren't afraid of heights. Along with other vert pioneers such as Niko Weis and Cory Campbell, we ripped it as there was footage shown in the Skull Skates video Resist Control. I believe it was torn down after some kid encountered a serious injury.


The Back Yard ramp pics were just one of many ramps that were built and torn down. This one was located in an alley off Kingsway in Vancouver. In the picture airing off the side of the ramp, I used to snap my trucks doing that stunt so often that my local supplier Nippon Cycles supplied me with trucks for testing purposes. Those were the days as I have fond memories and feel extremely fortunate that I can still skate all these new world class parks today in the year 2005.
A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 
A blast from the past, 70's skateboarding with Wee Ming Wong
 

Cheers, Wee
autoRepairsRWee.com skater owned & operated

Check out current photos of Wee skating bonsor, hastings & port coquitlam.

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