Category Archives: SPOTS:

486: The 78 Ditch Revisited

I heard about the 78 ditch about two weeks ago, and ever since we’ve been in a frenzy to find its exact location. I was in contact with Jason Oliva, an old school skater who hit the place over 20 years ago. Through searching Youtube, some blogs by Jason on House Of Steam’s account, and some extensive Google Maps usage, we were able to locate the 78 ditch. We followed the fence, did a little house keeping to make it skateable again, and documented with stills and video. The “Green Door,” some rails, plenty of tags, and drop-in points are all there. It was an awesome day and lots of people went in to making it happen. We will definitely be there again. For anyone that needs the help, contact us for directions. We will bring back to glory of the 78 Ditch!

Pj Zavorskas

-Jan 27 2010

Chris “Weep” Blank circa 1986

Photo Ben Cornish

Nice work PJ!!

I cant believe how overgrown it is most of those trees on the righthand  side were not even there 22 years ago…you could be seen skating it from the highway now its nice and shady. So the cycle continues…Most of the grafitti on the ditch was there before any of us showed up in the mid 80’s I also remember a guy named Ray Bolbe(sp) would be there riding an old school long board. I dont think we will ever know who found it first but it was not us so things get passed on. Cant wait to see it again when I am back in the states.



PS here is how it looked in 1988 from a Film Ben Cornish Shot of myself and Michael Pruskowski

476: Derek Rinaldi doing who knows what. Photo Todd Laffler (Fish*Eye Issue 1)and Full Bleed: New York City Skate Photography

Derek Rinaldi

Photo Todd Laffler

Special thanks to Sean Kazelesky as well(Welcome to THOS)

Here is a great picture of the DR doing something magical from Todd Laffler’s epic Fish*Eye Numero Uno. Besides being pretty darn cool this sequence reminds me of those worthless trick tip articles.  The trick would be an egg plant with pictures of someone cool like Dan Wilkes and the captions would read….drop in and approach the wall with a moderate amount of speed …pump the transition and as you approach the vert grab your board with the opposite hand that you would use to do an invert ….now reach for the coping invert your body extend then compress let go land back on the ramp….then the inevitable……NOW PUMP AND DO ANOTHER…too ridiculous. I have tried to get Pump and do another into the everday vernacular of life but it never would stick and in most cases it sounds like a sexual innuendo. Next time you are done instructing someone finish by saying “Now  pump and do another” …also if you can scan a ridiculous trick tip please email me one all my mags are in temporary storage. Most of them should just read….drop in with the trick in mind…spazz your body around in some semblance of what you imagine it would need to be doing….bail and slam enough times until the enlightenment of the fact that it is  less tiring and alot less painful to just go ahead and land the trick…..THEN pump and do another.

Now as for Derek…approach the transitioned street obstacle with a blazing amount of speed…. utilise a lifetimes worth of hard work and practice in order to ollie ridiculously high…..take your front foot off the board and then replace it before landing….Now pump and do another.

Also Derek has landed (no Pun) a photo in the upcoming Full Bleed:New York City Skate Photography it is a picture of a gentleman who is well represented in our archive:

Mike Vallely 1988 Brooklyn Bridge Banks

Photo Derek Rinaldi

As far as Full Bleed:New York Skateboard Photography goes I do not know the peeps personally behind it but I am familiar with the peeps behind the peeps and that is the distributer PowerHouse Books in D.U.M.B.O. The place is worth a trip over the Brooklyn Bridge, have lunch at Bubby’s too and send me an iphoto of some pie! PowerHouse is an amazing Independent art/photography book distributer and book store. Its one of those NY places that you can spend hours milling around in and sometimes a band will be performing. So check out Full Bleed and then inundate PowerHouse with email requests for a THOS Book!! Great stuff!

Full Bleed: NY City Skate photography

by Alex Corporan, Andre Razo, and Ivory Serra

Distributed by PowerHouse Brooklyn 2010 and Published by Vice

with photo by Derek Rinaldi and a cavalcade of other talented skate photographers

Great work DR..Click for more info/pre-order on FB:NYYCSP and PHB then pump and do another…

Jason Oliva Artist

PS Guess who that is on the cover?

PSS No its not me

469: Mike Vallely – Brooklyn Bridge Banks closing till 2014 due to construction

We have all spent a lot of time at this place pre and post off ramp spiked fence….I lived 5 minutes from the Brooklyn Bridge Banks for 12 years and spent almost a year walking through there twice a day on my way over the bridge to a DUMBO art studio I established…..I for one was never able to ollie the highway divider (or any divider for that matter) its hard to believe Mike Vallely was undettered by that devil’s pitchfork of a barrier and conquered it. I will leave anymore to be said about the place to Mike…he says it best.

Thanks to Larry Ransom for this bang up mini documentary and Mike for Mik’ing

Checkout Mike V’s new updated online presence as well.


460: Holy crap! The Christmas list is swelling: Pulaski Park! Washington DC

Pulaski Park Washington DC Tech Deck

This was sent to me by my good old DC buddy and skateboard explorer and charitable giver Jimmy Pelletier. I am not even going to attempt to write anything here I will just cut n paste from Jimmy:


gus hotdog stand sold separately…

Jimmy Pelletier

Tech Deck! If you are reading how about an old weathered barn with a removable roof so you can get at ‘The Ramp” inside. Something like this:

Here is where we stand:

The Christmas list grows:(Maybe I can get this list to 12 before Xmas, Im gonna start doing this every year)

-Tony Hawk RIDE (check out the contest!!)

-The House of Steam Tee Shirt…LOL

-ONE CHOICE (Rob Mertz) Vinyl/with Digital Download

-CF Dan Wilkes Guest Model

-Anything from DeathMarch Skates

-Sublime Wheels on a Miramar Longboard

-A photo of Neil Blender skating The Animal Chin Ramp (More of a Xmas Wish, Although we have confirmation he did skate !)

-A Pulaski Park, Washington DC Tech Deck…or a Prototype for a “Barn” Tech Deck

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427: NJ High School Ditch, Weep & Corn, Tag, Rocky, Roenning circa 85 A Padulo Brothers Brigade film!


Hey Jason

SkateBoarding” Clip
That’s Tag to start. Looks like there a ton of people on the ground watching. Next is Rocky in the White Helmet. He always skated like Cab with that smooth style and crooked neck.  That’s Corn in the blue shirt and yellow helmet.  That’ Jeff Roenning in the white Zorlac shirt and yellow helmet. And I think thats weep sitting on the platform as Rocky chucks an air over his knees.  Next is Corn and Weeps at the Ditch. Corn said it’s the ditch by the highschool but I think it’s the one closer to Bridgewater on 78 East.  I could be wrong. This part kinda chokes me up watching it.  And then there’s the weird Kona part at the end. I know nothing about it.

The second part of the clip is at my ramp again and it’s Tag again.

I’m sure the people that did the original transfer just stuck it together with no rhyme or reason.  My folks still have the original film too.

Dave Padulo

Jason Oliva

Classic stuff! That is the ditch on route 78 across from Watchung Hills regional Highschool. 

Out the cafeteria (during lunch) and through the woods then it was just a quick  game of Frogger across 78 and you could skate for 15 minutes or so and have time to get back to class. Unless you went with Weep who would take one annoying long 15 minute run and leave you standing there to watch…Commmmmmaaaahhhhhhnnnnn WEEP!! enough already!…great times.

PS. The generic transfer music is too sad.


Jason Oliva and Weep Sciving off from school: High School Ditch NJ…86’ish

Photo Ben Cornish


407: Andrew Lipari, NYC 2008

Andrew Lipari NYC 2008


Jason Oliva

My good, good friends son, Andrew Lipari….Coming up fine, and hitting the Brooklyn bridge banks ta boot!

Skatin to The Doors….Good Stuff Andrew, welcome to THOS.


397: “DR” Derek Rinaldi Brooklyn Bridge Circa NOW YO!! Photo Felipe Lara

Derek Rinaldi Brooklyn Bridge

Photo by Felipe Lara

Derek Rinaldi still crazying it up!! He is over scribing for those Juicesters now so hopefully he wont forget about his brethren at THOS.

Lean in or pull out the mag glass and check in on this 2009 Sequence at the Brooklyn Bridge Banks.