In January of 2005, at AJ Jackson’s birthday party, I met Rick Stark who managed the NISS events. Somehow he’d gotten his hands on a few thousand Cozmo wheels and hired me, Marco De Santi, and Omar Wysong to do the marketing for this sales project. OTB Jeans sponsored Marco and they needed vert photos for marketing. Thumper Nagasako was in town and we were shooting for Maui & Sons Clothing. If I remember right, we had planned to shoot in Santa Monica at Tracy White’s vert ramp but the Boys & Girls Club was remodeling the park.
So we needed another option. I always saw an old vert ramp overlooking the 101 near downtown LA. It was at the “Dream Center.” I don’t much about the place, but if you Google it, “cult like” things pop up along with a few photos of Latoya Jackson.
Anyway, we decided this was our only real option, and it was a sketchy to say the least. Some of the highlights were: loose coping, splintered wood, missing masonite, loose nails, and I believe the ramp was off center. One of the better features of this ramp was that if you had nothing to lose, you could launch out on to the 101 freeway.
Sometime before our session I had asked the locals if they skated it and was told instead to avoid the area. Being that this was the only local vert ramp, we obviously ignored their suggestion. Though Marco and Thumper were both equally frightened by the old ramp but were excited to skate together.
A few weeks later the ramp was removed.
— Jeff Linett