Photos by Rob Meronek, Brittany Decarolis, and Porpe
Words by Rob Meronek
Friday night was the Pro Party with some bands. Honestly, I wasn't feeling it this time around. I know I have thrash metal hair, but I'm not currently into the music that goes along with it. I skipped watching the show.
The progression of your average big night out starts with sober lurking out front of the venue as you meet and greet homies that you'll be sharing bar face with later. I found Porpe out front in phase one of big night out.
Charlene, Denae, Elishia, Brittany, and Melissa. I must have looked like a straight up gay dude rolling with five girls.
Matt Welch runs Transitions Art Gallery
. I think he's weird because he doesn't drink. I'm sure he thinks I'm weird for thinking he's weird for not drinking. It's settled. We're both weird.
The death metal is mind numbing right now. I think this was the band Trash Talk.
Yeah, I need a break. It's back out to Reservoir Bar across the street. Thanks to all the Ybor establishments like Res and Rock N Sports that have our boards on their walls.
The Skatepark of Tampa locals are always running the pool table in Reservoir Bar.
Pause for a foot fetish. It's hard to take a foot fetish with no flash in a dark bar and a beer in one hand so you can't focus.
Some people pass out in phase two of the big night out and get left behind by their friends. Poor dude.
Rob Hoovis - Fort Myers OG.
Another Fort Meyers OG, Matt Milligan, with Tito and Jen Porrata from Team Pain.
Can you believe that guy in the middle is actually in the FSEC? That's SPoT locals Jata, Yonnie, T4PREZ.
Alright, I'm out of Res and back in the Ritz where Kurtis Colamonico and I need a shot to bear the death metal screamo punk madness.
Colin Kennedy, DVS filmer, and Torey Pudwill, DVS Golden Child.
Phase three of the big night out is of course shots.
The side room at the Ritz seemed to be more popular than the pit at the show. Bill Weiss, thanks for bringing the Blind team and keeping your clothes on in public this time.
Ryan Clements is laughing behind Scott Koerner's back because he kicked his ass yet again in the TM and Industry VIP Contest.
DJ Wade could scratch records with his jaw right now. I should have shot a sequence of it.
Seamus from The Bricks
is getting Charlie's Angels on us.
Brooke brought a photo prop. Usually phase four of the big night out for me is to take some random object and make 40 or so of my friends get a photo with it. I somehow managed to avoid that this time.
It's nearly pitch black on the floor for this foot fetish, but the Nikon D3S can still see. If only my drunk ass could focus.
Jeff Lako, Elisha, and Scotty the Body, new to the TM and Industry VIP Contest.
Matt Giles, formerly a local at SPoT, now just a local at the bars.
Kelly of the female FSEC didn't want a photo because her mom would see the low cut shirt she was wearing.
I would expect to see Pat Duffy and Mike Peterson in the pit, but instead we were all enjoying the $5 PBRs.
Pause for another foot fetish. I have no idea who this is.
Ryan Sheckler was out every night hanging out the whole weekend. Thanks for coming back, Sheckler.
It's amazing the amount of space Stalker Steve takes up in this photo compared to the other two people combined.
Angel Ramirez and with what appears to be a girl with dirty fingernails.
Nick Trapasso and Melissa - he never looks into the camera.
Gabe Clement from DVS gets some use of the prop.
Phase four of the big night out for me is taking way too many foot fetish photos.
Adam Kearley from Innetech manned the grill all weekend long.
Brittany's just as hyped on photography as I am and took over photo duty for a while. First shot fired is The Perfect Man. And that other guy is Kenny Anderson - ha.
Not sure what Brittany was going for here. I don't know how Melissa kept that skirt down the whole night. It was so short I was just waiting for vagina to fly out at any moment.
Damn, Brittany took one of my favorite nightlife / party photos ever.
In this really low light, the auto white balance has no idea what to do and I'm too lazy to fix. That's Sierra and Jimmy in the dim, low, yellow lights.
You know a girl has the camera when there's photos from the girl's bathroom. Looks like some female skaters have been here.
So phase five of the big night out usually involves returning to the bar you started out at to shut it down. During that process, Tony Tave and I made some new friends, Justin and Nico, who drove here from Georgia to watch Tampa Pro.
Brittany's got an art brain. I got stuck with a numbers brain so her photos are always looking way better than mine. This view here is what underage kids see from the outside looking in at Reservoir Bar.
The grimy streets of Ybor City.
Cheers to the skateboarders' beer, PBR.
I'm sure Kenny Hughes schooled the locals on the pool table.
Rob Brink writes about adventures in skateboarding over at Rob Brink.com
. I can't remember who handed us this little tag with "Robert" on it.
George Cutright rolls with an undercover Leica.
Durke Schmidt will soon be pouring your sauce at The Bricks
More of the grime on the streets of Ybor City.
I met some dudes who read the website. Looks like they need a Frontside Grind Magazine cover.
When my night ended, I found Porpe in the middle of the streets chasing down the same cab I was trying to get. Neither of us remember this photo. That's phase six of the big night out. Photos that remind you of what a good time you had.
So Porpe took my cab so I went back to the bar for more big night out and ran into
Erica and The Perfect Man still holding it down outside the bars.
Meanwhile, back at Skatepark, the headliner band for the Pro Party, F**ked Up, stopped by to check out some skating.
All day long, free sauce from PBR, Berentzen, and Red Bull was flowing. Nick Matlin is in.
Kurtis told me about the new Famous shoes they're making.
Outside, these dudes are hyped on being the latest car in the moat victims.
That's their ride waiting for a tow truck bailout. The Moat swallows another one.
It's now Saturday night and I'm back on the bar scene. That's Ira Ingram from the Giant Dudes That Rip club. I'm pretty sure he's not going to remember this photo.
This is the scene at Czar Bar where we are on round two of yet another big night out.
One time years ago, Freddy Tan and I skated together all around Orlando. Now it's all sauce at the bar.
It's the night of the St. Patty's Day Parade and Joey Brezinski is all about it. Danny Montoya, thanks for making the drive to Tampa Pro.
I almost forgot about the "I am no longer too cool to dance" phase of the big night out. I definitely hit that phase of the night in Czar.
I'm also at the foot fetish phase again.
Now I'm one again at the "I don't remember these photos" phase. That's Evan Smith and I think those are beads from the parade.
Former Tampa local Aaron Brown and Brandon Bristol, both FSEC members.
Pete Eldridge, thanks for bringing your pop to Tampa Pro.
Stalker Steve, monopolizing the frame again with Dan Pensyl.
Mama at Reservoir loves these birthday spankings.
Brittany, Charlene, and that one girl you only know as Rob's Sister
Another big night out comes to a close in front of Reservoir Bar. Good night everyone.
It's no surprise to have a random run-in with Adam Dyet at 2am on the streets of Ybor.
Back at the Park on Sunday morning, the Larry Perkins Dunk release is about to go down and the line is forming. Hopefully everyone got a pair.
Here's what the line-up looked like on the decks during practice. I spy a frontside nosepick.
Looks like Tommie Zam from The Finest Skate Shop signed a 20-year multi-million dollar contract with Gatorade.
Curse from Dean Guitars and his daughter were out to watch some of the Contest and give away two serious Dean Guitars to the winners.
I spy another frontside nosepick in this photo of the judges and announcers.
I was hyped like a child when Dennis Busenitz checked in.
Justin from Innetech kept the grease fires under control.
With all that free sauce flowing, why weren't there more loud ass drunk dudes in the audience? I wish I wasn't working so I could be that guy.
He almost piled dropping into the bank ramp during the Finals.
As usual, there's free ink from Atomic Tattoos
all weekend. This dude's first ink is the SPoT logo.
Throwing eggs is the new Moat Race tradition. This dude is about to get pelted from the right.
When your fellow Moat Race contestant can't make it to the finish line, you have to go back and help him out like a wounded soldier.
You need a full hosedown before re-entering the building after the Moat Race.
The Finals are about to get going so the number of filmers and photographers on the course triples.
Free PBR gets you all loose and makes you feel okay with posing all Cosmo Magazine style.
Gatorade had some kind of drawing contest outside. This was the winning pick and they got a year's supply of Gatorade. Good thing they didn't win Tommie Zam's haircut.
That's SPoT local Justin Zaragoza documenting the chaos of Best Trick.
I had to leave for a bit to get some work done so Porpe took over the camera. First shot in: the girls product toss section. Yeah, Porpe.
Then he was just shooting random shots of the crowd. I spy a tiki hut looking head of hair, ginger bangs, weird beard, and dude looks like a lady.
Emo ass hair is allowed in here?
That's Hunter from Nike SB. Sorry I said you don't kickflip that good in the interview I had
. Not like I can either. They left out the laughter that was going on about it during the phone conversation. It's true, but yeah, sorry I said that. A skate business site talked to me about the business side of running contests. I guess they needed a title so they called me the Chief Financial Officer. High five from Captain Corporate
Looks like Porpe is having a fun time with the long lens. He's right up in the face of Kenny from Gatorade.
We got the brick laying gitter dunnnn crew in the crowds which consists of Schaefer's brother Glen.
Peter Ramondetta got the Fan Favorite Award Presented by The Skateboard Mag, SPoT, and Nike SB.
I'm back on the camera with the fisheye now. If you were in this crowd, thanks for being here with us at Tampa Pro.
Neckface did the trophies.
Porpe got a sequence of Matt Miller's backside noseblunt, but I'm going to have to wait until tomorrow to do that from my brian being fried from yet another 14+ hour workday the day after Tampa Pro. Matt got a Dean Guitar and $3,000 for winning the Silver Trucks Best Trick.
Ryan Sheckler, thanks for the nice words you said about us on the mic.
Proper use of the Tampa Pro Contest shirt.
Keegan Sauder was super happy about 3rd place.
The champagne pops as P-Rod is announced the winner of this year's Tampa Pro.
It must be an amazing feeling to accomplish a goal you set for yourself years ago. After the dust settled and the champagne stopped flowing, I could see it in P-Rod's face that it finally sunk in. Small head shakes, lots of blinking, and such a thankful feeling where it almost looked like tears of joy were about to flow.
Thanks to Ryan Clements and Brian Schaefer for all the microphone entertainment all weekend. Jeff Pang, too.
We are now at the After-Party at Rock N Sports in Ybor City. Angel is trying to sneak out of the photo.
This kid came up to me and said, "Can I get a photo for my Facebook?" Here you go.
Matt Selego and I have a drunk tradition of picking each other up. I'm getting weak.
Barak Wiser definitely has bar face right now.
Schaefer's other brother, Glen, was Jersey Shore before it was cool.
The Fuel TV crew doesn't appear to be eating very healthy. Thanks for putting together the huge production of the live webcast.
The etnies team was laying low all weekend - Mikey Taylor, Tyler Bledsoe, TM Heath, and Sean Malto.
I'm more of a fan of these two guys the more I hang out with them and especially the more I see them skate in person. Both rad dudes - Tyler Hendley and Ryan Sheckler. As far as Sheckler goes, at this point, I think he's plowed and persevered through a serious $h!tstorm of hate and come out the other side clean. Anyone else in his million dollar position would be getting fat at the nightclubs, but Sheckler continues to let his skating do the talking. At this point it seems the only people left hating are people who still think Nike SB is bad for skateboarding. Hang on to 1999 for life, bro. We're moving on.
Tomorrow Colin Clark is going to New Zealand for the first time. He has no plans or reservations. Now that's living. You should try it sometime.
Tony Tave, Sierra Fellers, and Luan Oliveira.
The fisheye is giving Evan Smith the Gerwer nose.
Frosty and Stalker Steve hold it down behind the scenes all weekend.
Frosty The Snowman
The Brazilians were ruling the soccer table - Neverton Casella, Luan Oliveira, Leticia Bufoni, and Fabio Castilho.
Some people said Kenny Anderson and I looked like brothers. Then you see me skate and quickly realize there is absolutely no relation.
So it seems the last phase of all my big nights out in Ybor involve a random spotting of Adam Dyet on the streets. Good night everyone. Thanks for another amazing weekend of Tampa Pro.