The culture behind the board

The snowboarding culture at UVM is evolving, and if you’re not on (a) board, you could be left in the powder.The University of Vermont, surrounded by the likes of Stowe, Jay Peak, Bolton Valley and Smugglers Notch, provides substantial attraction for college students looking to get their shred on Eamonn Kress said, snowboarder and UVM student.The Snowboard Team boasts more than 90 members and a full time coach according to The Ski and Snowboard Club is the “the biggest paid membership club on cam?pus with about 1,500 kids” said their graphic and Web designer Ross Travis, who also holds down a spot on the team’s roster. These students not only venture to the mountain frequently, but also bring much of their culture back to cam?pus.Many structural features across campus have even made their way into large scale professional productions, such as ROME’s new shred flick “Any Means.” has a network group keeping snowboarders (a.k.a. shredders) informed about the “Mercy Mountain Lab” on Trinity campus, a snow playground of sorts built by students.But some of the more prominent influences snowboarding has on campus can be seen in students’ attire. “Outrageousness” is the word Axle Heimer, team rider and Marketing Director, used to summarize the look. Heimer, with the general agreement of the team, joked that “snowboarding is 90 percent fashion and 10 percent skill.”This could explain some of the “poppy colors, tight pants, large t-shirts and hat sag” seen on campus daily or why it is becoming more popular to dress like “a lampshade” said Heimer.The emergence of tight pants, replacing the 1990s baggy boxer sag, began “about two years ago” said Heimer, “and they are getting tighter everyday”His advice for those seeking style includes the avoidance of “turtle fur and pants that don’t touch the ground.”The poppy colors and outrageousness have manifested into a similar spontaneous demeanor among shredders.This includes language like “gnar gnar” which UVM student Liz Mazer says she hears frequently on campus.According to the the term refers to the “The deepest of the deep and the powest of the pow pow” and is derived from the slang “gnarly.”However, the culture isn’t purely about the fashion and language, it’s about the attitude. Heimer said that a shredder will “party all night, snowboard all day, miss half their classes and their sisters wedding to follow the powder and still do better than most students”Team shredder and lifetime local Collin Kolisko summarizes UVM’s snowboarders as “by nature some of the happiest, nicest people you will ever know or meet.” However, he also notes, that “with a foot of fresh, all bets are off,” concluding his summary with words to live by, “802 represent!”