Write-up by Rod Short
Photography by Quinn Stocker
For anyone who may not know, James spent his entire life skating, and always supporting, and promoting the skating industry. He had friends everywhere he travelled and was truly an ambassador for the sport. He was known for his toe rolls, cess slides and innovative technical skating. James was hit and killed by a drunk driver in 2009, he was 24 years old.
An impromptu session was put together by Stefan Brandow right after James died and since then the session has been held on the last Saturday in August each year, hence the 3rd annual Session.
Since James was a rollerblader and a singer/songwriter/musician, the session is always put together to honor his memory and to celebrate his life and the things he loved. This year also marked the release of a 2 CD set, called “Tread Water”, of all of James’ songs he wrote and recorded in his life.
There was live music all day (from noon till 11 pm), Iced chai, lots of great food, even a hair cutting booth for donations by Studio West, the top salon in the area, and of course, lots of great skating!
There was great representation by skaters from Detroit, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Dayton, and L.A., as well as James’ hometown T-County Bladers.
There were 3 formal contests for cash prizes, Best Trick, Best Toe Roll, and Best Cess Slide, which were hosted by, and judged by Xsjado Pro Ben Schwab, Gary Murphy and Michael Callahan. Results are as followed:
- Luke Naylor (Detroit)
- Jimmy Spetz (Cleveland)
Best Toe Roll
Aaron Pyle (Dayton)
Best Cess Slide
Justin Fuelling (N. Ridgeville)
The true spirit of the James Short Memorial Session is that of old friends getting together, meeting new friends, celebrating James’ lifelong love of skating and music and, above all… having a great time!
All proceeds from this event and the sale of James’ CD go to the James Short Memorial Fund which is used to put on the event each year and to help fund charities that James loved.
Event sponsors this year included The Conference, Xsjado, Remz, Valo, Roller Warehouse, Sic Apparel, ONE Magazine and of course, Be-Mag Magazine!