Do you remember being a shy child at a monotonous family gathering? Twiddling your thumbs and waiting ’til you can eat dinner and say goodbye to your touchy Aunt Barb until Easter comes around. Then, suddenly, the cool cousins shows up. Ya know, Dad’s side of the family. Cousin Keith starts telling you sex stories from his college dorm, cousin Sarah has a cute friend with her that makes you think of the Victoria’s Secret catalog cutouts you have hidden under your bed, and maybe Uncle Steve even lets you sneak a sip of his Bud Light. For me, Flanel Lifestyles was the cool Uncle Steve, and a dense group of passionate, committed snowboarders was the brief sip of Bud Light.
It’s hard, sometimes, to predict even the inevitable. When you grow up snowboarding in a tight-knit, tow-rope-scattered state like Michigan, you’re bound to assemble a group of like-minded friends and riders, be it intentional or not. That’s exactly what Flanel Lifestyles accomplished. Spanning from Detroit, to Grand Rapids, all the way up the Marquette, and virtually every little town in between, it’s likely that Flanel has a friend and/or team rider somewhere in the mix. Riding tow-ropes until their gloves burn off, or hiking handrails long after the sun goes down. Flanel Lifestyles just celebrated their 5 year anniversary. 5 years of comradery, passion, full parts, and full movies. 5 years of park-lapping, road tripping, house partying, couch-crashing, spot-scoping, police dodging fun.
Watch this video. Or don’t. Maybe you don’t want to watch 20 or so friends having the times of their lives. Maybe these people have no relation to you whatsoever, I get it. Or, watch this video from a viewpoint other than your own. Use it to reflect on your own past experiences. Use it to reflect upon your own Flanel team, whatever that may be to you. Maybe it’s the few friends you used to hike with in your backyard to learn boardslides on a PVC pipe, or the group of friends you used to take park laps with until ski patrol corralled you off the hill like cattle. Whatever it is, don’t lose sight of it. The Flanel guys (and girls) signify what snowboarding is to me, what snowboarding needs, and what snowboarding can never lose.
Featuring: Jack Harris, Brett Kulas, Matt Miller, Tyler May, Mac Eckstrand, Al Pal, Charles Beck, Joey Leppien, Trevor Newman, Andrew Carroll, Matt Ruhle, Eric Starke, Brent Behm, Brandon Vandyke, Jeremy Vandyke, Linden Cool, Avery Erickson, Dan Pandzic, Grant Peterson, Alek Binder, Dusty Miller, Jackie Lammert, Eric Christopherson, Dan Spooner, Eddie Fauth, Adam Rottschafer and more.