Kalle’s made a name for himself as a versatile rider who throws down hammers with style. In addittion, he‘s been giving back to the sport he loves by hosting the Blue Parks Eurocamp and Kids Tour. We hit him with some questions about giving back…
Why do you think that holding grassroots events and camps is important?
With snowboarding going partly into a heavy contest, commercial and athlete direction, someone has to create opportunities for some good old snowboarding, If you don’t ride for sponsors, pushy parents or TV seconds but for fun and progress then sponsors will come anyways. Most of the greatest riders come from that mind set! Just look at Danny Davis, Halldor, Mikkel Bang, Kazu…. Yeah sure, Max Parrot (one of the “athletes” of snowboarding) wins a bunch of medals and spins a lot, but really: who believes he’ll go down in the history of snowboarding? I put my bet on some of the boys mentioned above.
What’s your motivation for organising these events?
As a pro you have a lot of free time in the summer. Instead of sitting around on my ass, I work my ass off planning all these events together with Magnus [Kristofferson]. The biggest reward is when people come up to me after events and are smiling because they can’t believe how much fun it was! Then you know you’ve showed them the right way of snowboarding.
Not everyone’s got the opportunity to set up such events. How else can people give back to snowboarding?
There’s a million things to do! If you’re a pro or even just the local hero, go up to a rookie in the park, pat him on the back and say, ”Good riding little dude!”, he’ll be beyond stoked. Or give some of your old gear to one of your fans, they’ll remember that for the rest of their lives. You could also do a session on your local hill. Fire up a BBQ, put on some music and go riding with the locals. It’s amazing how little you have to do to create something that’s well appreciated!
With all the gnarly shit going down, triples and the likes, do you get the vibe that the real fun in snowboarding gets lost?
No. I think a lot of the people throwing those crazy contest tricks enjoy it. Most of them probably don’t enjoy the riding as much as others, but other things like the reward of winning a contest. Everyone works differently. As long as there are all aspects of snowboarding available and promoted, then snowboarding will be just fine!