February 23rd, 2017
Air + Style is a global Big Air snowboard competition and music festival that features world-class action sports athletes and musicians along with art, community and culture during a two-day event series in Los Angeles, California during the weekend of February 18th and 19th.
Not only does this festival offer a wide variety of music, but it was said to provide some of the “finest” food trucks in the L.A area. Senior at San Clemente Beau Hagan says, “ I ordered tacos, and at the time they were really good. I soon realized that ordering tacos from some sketchy taco truck at a festival was the worst idea. I got food poisoning that night.”
The qualifiers on Saturday night were one of the closest big air competition sessions to date! Crowds of people bounced back and forth from watching the riders and their favorite music artists while the rain held off for the show. Each rider had two runs to put down their best to try to qualify them for the next round of 16 finalists. Of course for some, their best wasn’t good enough and were forced to end their journey there. To make the snowboarding even more exciting, crowds of people cheered the names of their favorite boarders. Hannah Reed, senior at San Clemente High says, “ The snowboarding was one of my favorite parts. I really admire Seppe Smits so it was really cool to see him live.”
At the end of the long weekend the top three snowboarders for the L.A. location of the 2017 Air + Style Tour were Max Parrot, Seppe Smits, and Marcus Kleveland.
Aside from the thrilling competition, the musicians fell short and disappointed a lot of expectations. With headliners Flume and Major Lazer and other popular acts like Zhu, Chromeo and Louis the Child, the festival claimed it would turn into a full-blown dance party. It fell short, and adding in the hip-hop was probably the biggest drawback here: YG, Vince Staples, Atmosphere, Russ and Vic Mensa were all amazing , but most didn’t outshine the leading EDM headliners. Air + Styles started in 2015 as a rave with just snowboarding and EDM. Looks like they should have kept it that way.
Flume ending the first night with a huge bang, leaving the crowd wanting more. Even though the day started off rough, it ended with an unforgettable performance that left the crowd in awe. Xavier Hendricks, senior at San Clemente High School, claims, “Flume was for sure my favorite performer that Saturday. I was starting to get let down, but then Flume came out and it was worth the entire day. Just a completely unforgettable experience.”
YG is a popular rapper, but it seems he didn’t bring his “A” game for the last day of the festival. Between the crackling base and lack luster performance, it really was the biggest let down of the day. At the same stage, Major Lazer ended the night with a breathtaking performance under the sprinkling drops of rain. A mix of high powered lights illuminated the sky, which shadowed the rain for the most picturesque scene.
Overall, between the let down of most music artists and the exciting snowboarding, the festival left everyone with mixed emotions. Ending both nights with unforgettable performances from headliners Flume and Major Lazer definitely raised the bar. With snowboarding being the main contribute to the weekend, it set the festival aside from any other festival and made it unique and something unforgettable, even with its drawbacks.