Your local skate shop is always on top of the latest products and has contributed enourmously to the local skate scene. Should you repay them by spending money on skate equipment in lame box-stores? Hell no. Every dollar you spend at the skate shop helps them stay in business. If those same dollars are spent in a sporting goods store, that takes needed income from the core of skateboarding.
Are you stoked when you see a stack of basketballs in a sporting goods store? What about your local skate shop? Every time I go to mine, I get stoked to skate. They carry top quality and they tell me about upcoming products and events. I run into friends there and find out about the local scene. Sporting goods stores have loitering policies to make sure you buy a football and then get the hell out of their store.
Uninformed skaters/consumers need your help. You can lend a hand and help support local skate shops by downloading these SYLSS "Crappy Skateboard" WARNING LABELS (4-up PDF files) and stick 'em on those crappy products you encounter in the mall, discount stores, toy stores and sporting goods stores.
Only independent skateboard shops sell quality products that won't break or fall apart in the first 10 minutes of use. Boards purchased from crappy department stores and gluttonous box-stores are unsafe and will usually result in unnecessary injuries.
Your local skate shop is the only place that cares about you and ensuring you get high quality equipment. Department stores, toy stores and sporting goods stores only want your money. Independent skate shops want to keep you as a customer by helping you get the best products available.
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