Wakestock 08: Boarders, bands, and beer

by W. Andrew Powell

Wakestock 2006

Wakeboarder during Wakestock 2006

Wakestock takes over the Toronto Islands this weekend for one of the biggest sporting and music events of the year. Combining wakeboarding, skateboarding, freestyle moto-x, parties, bands, and a bikini contest, the competition and festival is likely to draw huge crowds once again for the eleventh annual event.

Among the many events at the festival, the Malibu Boats Pro Expression Session is the highlight of the competitions, with men and women from all over the world testing their skills. Forty of the best men and fifteen of the best women will compete, performing jumps and tricks while being towed by boat.

Another fantastic competition at the event is the Wakeskate Pool Jam, a wild sport that has athletes in a type of wave pool. As the Wakestock site puts it, “think skateboard park on water.” Each competitor is pulled toward a pool with rails and obstacles and they have to perform tricks to get across into the far-side pool.

For music fans, the weekend combines a lot of big alternative artists, with GZA and RZA of Wu-Tang Clan headlining Saturday night, and Metric closing out the event on Sunday. Other performers include Silverstein, Classified, Rebel Emergency, We Are Scientists, Dragonette, and Lights, to name a few.

Otherwise, there is a skateboard competition, freestyle moto-x, parties every night of the event, and on Saturday afternoon, the always popular Wakestock Bikini Contest.

Tickets can be purchased at the door or through Ticketmaster and cost $42.50 for either Saturday or Sunday, or you can pick up a weekend pass for $62.50. Since the event happens on the Toronto Islands, you will have to take either the ferry or a water taxi from Queen’s Quay. Visit the City of Toronto website for more information on the ferry schedule, but a round-trip costs just $6.50 per person. Those traveling to the island should just be warned that the ferry can be incredibly busy on weekends, so expect long lines if you don’t arrive early.

The GATE will have coverage of Wakestock 2008, including photos and stories from the event so stay tuned on Sunday and Monday for more. You can find out more about Wakestock on the official website at www.wakestock.com.

Wakestock 2006: Bikini Contest

Bikini contest during Wakestock 2006

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