It’s impossible to overstate how important KCDC Skateshop is to New York’s skateboarding scene. Amy Gunther Ellington first opened the shop in Williamsburg over two decades ago at this point, and it’s been a staple ever since.
As one of the few female skate shop owners around, Amy and her team have created a community that has always been inviting and diverse. We credit KCDC as one of the institutions that brought some real change that can be felt at whatever street spot or skate park you find yourself in the city.
In celebration of the shop’s 20th anniversary, they teamed up with Nike SB to create a Dunk and throw a party at Coney Island to incorporate literal fun and games into their big day.
Being that the Jenkem crew has been intertwined with the shop for years, we took the ride all the way down to congratulate everyone involved on a job well done and cheer them on so they can keep this thing going for many years to come.
KCDC has been stocking Dunks and dealing with pesky sneakerheads for forever now, so it’s about time they got their own.
Natalie Thomas (of Date A Sk8er fame), Kevin Tagge, Amy Gunther Ellington, and Keith Denley all hanging in front of the freshly branded storefront.
We consider Natalie OG Jenkem family because she was down to potentially embarrass herself for thousands of YouTube commenters’ enjoyment in one of the first episodes of our dating show. She was a good sport and handled herself super well, and she’s embedded herself in the skate scene here incredibly well since then, too.
Some of you may only know Coney Island from pop culture references like the movie The Warriors or lyrics from Ramones songs, but it’s a genuine piece of American history. The fact that KCDC was able to book access to the rides, games, sideshow, and museum in the off-season came as a bit of a shock. It’s basically unheard of, so hats off to them for pulling it off.
Every worthwhile skate party needs an overly complicated obstacle that only the unsponsored psychos will skate. This one was made even more tricky by the wind blowing straight off the ocean. Shout out to this foot planter for landing this trick that never quite looks as hard as it definitely was.
Leo used to come into the shop while our very own Larry Lanza was working there and it was always a treat. Not only because Leo is as friendly as they come, but because he always had his little french bulldog alongside him.
For two decades KCDC has been stocking all kinds of shit made by people who come through the shop. Pants, magazines, boards, wax, T-shirts… you name it. If you’re down with KCDC and you put some effort into your products, the shop will probably take a chance on you.
Here we see Marcus Waldron of Skate Jawn, Gregory Scott Simmons II, and Pat Hoblin of Pat’s Pants. You can find Skate Jawn and Pat’s Pants over at KCDC.
Former shop employee, and extended KCDC fam, Andrew Hurley helped soundtrack the night by busting out a vinyl set. It’s cliche to say, but DJing is a bit of a lost art, so seeing anyone pull up with physical records will always be that little bit more impressive. People forget that before Serato you had to lug in crates of records for the night. If the people hated what you selected, you were fucked!
Davey Sayles is a former college football player turned amateur skater for Deathwish. Seems wild to choose the skate life over a fat NFL contract, but I would imagine hanging with Jamie Foy and Pedro Delfino is better than being in a locker room with Antonio Brown or Aaron Rodgers.
Jessyka Bailey (right) is There Skateboards’ newest pro, and if you haven’t seen her latest part, you should check it out here. While you’re at it, you might as well check out the parts we posted as well so we’re not just giving Thr***er free traffic without getting a little piece of our own as well.
Skater and filmer Abi Texeira assisted Hurley on the night with the DJ duties as well. You might remember her name from her Tasteful video, and if you missed it, watch a part from it here.
If you’ve been in KCDC in the past few years you’ve definitely run into Corey. Not only does Corey help run Pansy, a New York-based mutual aid group, but they also help organize most of the KCDC events that pop up in Brooklyn. Tip your cowboy hat to Corey next time you see them for setting a lot of this stuff up.
Several years ago while Larry was working at the shop on a Dunk release day, some dude in his 40s showed up trying to buy a pair without winning the raffle. Larry had to explain he couldn’t get a pair because he didn’t win. The dude offered $300, but Larry still refused. For the next eight hours, this man stood outside of the shop, smoked a full pack of cigs, and asked every customer leaving with a pair if he could buy them for $300. We’re still not sure if anyone caved.
Hearing the term “power couple” makes me cringe and think of really shitty celebrities that I could care less about. However, it really is the perfect descriptor for Amy and Erik. The two of them are constantly working on some insanely large projects stacked on top of a million smaller passion projects. Somehow, despite the constant work, they have a super wholesome family and life.
Since we’ve been talking a lot about people who have contributed to the New York skate scene, we’ll hit you with a few more for good measure. Here we have Steve Rodriguez, founder of 5Boro, and a big reason why there are so many amazing skate parks in New York, alongside Josh Stewart and Ally Atchison of Theories of Atlantis. Fun fact: Theories was the first company to distribute Palace and Polar in America. Aside from helping put NYC on the global skate map over the last decade, they also always answer our annoying requests for quotes on countless different articles, so we owe ya!
Shouts to the rest of the KCDC crew we didn’t get to grab a photo of and celebrate with: Nate, Crossy, Eddie, beers on us next time.
May 5, 2022 2:53 pm
Wait…so Theories owns ALL those other companies? Or do they just distribute? How did I not know about this?
Dial Tone Wheel Co.
May 5, 2022 3:00 pm
They don’t own all of those brands (that would be incredible lol) – but they distribute most of them to skate shops across the USA. Before Polar took everything in house, they were the first to distribute Polar in America I believe too.
May 6, 2022 9:48 am
Thanks for the clarification. So they’re basically the new “cool” DLX, Giant, TumYeto, Blitz, etc.
On a side note, I hate how we all say the word “brand” now. I walked into Labor in Brooklyn for trucks. They asked “what brand do you like?” I was like “brand? Seriously? I think of clothing as more of a brand. Not functionable, necessary products.” Calling hard good companies a “brand” is so weird to me. But I guess that’s where we are as a society and culture. Thanks Diamond & Grizzly! EVERYTHING is a brand now I suppose. Plus I’m 40…so there’s that. Obviously I’m out of touch and irrelevant.
May 5, 2022 3:11 pm
Also cool to mention the crazy sweet hearted lunatic Nevette Steele, who was a cofounder of the shop and did a ton of work to help make it what it was for the first ten years or so. Nevette rules. ❤️🙏
May 5, 2022 3:40 pm
BIG CONGRATS to Amy and KCDC on 20 years!
Eye spy an L The Head Toucha “Too Complex” 12″ vinyl selection on that there 1200!
May 19, 2022 5:20 pm
Okay but, how many several years ago was several years ago and what was the release in question?
Asking the important questions.