Sponsors: Burton, Zeal, Skullcandy, Mammoth Mountain, Clif Bar, Evo, Mimi’s Cookie Bar, Elemental Herbs
Kimmy Fasani is one of those people you are just grateful to know. Yeah, sure, she’s one of the most bad ass female riders on the planet, but she’s also one of the nicest, most genuine, down to earth person you could ever meet. Another thing that makes Kimmy so special is her dedication and pure love for the sport and her desire to create arenas for women to shine. Kimmy took some time out during her annual Amusement Park all-women’s gathering to talk shop and about what it means for her to host the event.
How did the Amusement Park concept come about?
About four years ago I wanted to learn the double in the park since I’d landed it in the backcountry, and I just wanted to have a fun park/spring session. Mammoth pulled something together for me really last minute. It was just a small jump, like 45 feet and that’s kind of the year it kicked off. I had four or five girls show up and every year it just changed a little: the jump, the area we were shooting in. Last year when I got hurt, I was like “Let’s make this into something. It has so much potential.” There’s not really a women’s specific photo shoot, fun celebration at the end of the season. So last year was when it really became Amusement Park.
How do you go about determining who you invite?
That is the hardest part. I never want anyone to feel excluded. It’s not supposed to feel exclusive. I just want women who I know are really down to progress the sport, who will be down to ride in the spring. I usually have about a 20 person list that I work through. I try to incorporate four or five girls who have never had a photo shoot experience before, but are really stepping up their game. Every year it changes. And if you get invited one year and not the next it’s not because you didn’t ride well. It’s just to make new opportunities for other girls. I try to have 10 to 12 riders to make it a really fun vibe. It’s a really inspiring variety of women too.
What do you hope to achieve and what are your goals for putting together the event?
The number one goal is to celebrate women’s progression in snowboarding. I want it to feel very relaxed and progressive at the same time. I just want the girls to feel comfortable and I don’t want there to be any pressure. I want them to be able to ride and have fun on a jump that was designed for them with their creative thoughts put into to it. Overall I’m just hoping to inspire the next generation of women to maybe think about creating these events themselves.
Ms. Superpark has grown to be so big now. Why do you think it’s important to have sessions like this?
Having the smaller sessions makes every girl feel special. It really gives every girl a fair chance to shine. I want the media to be able to focus on a small group of women and those women have a chance to show what they’re capable of, rather than being overshadowed by a huge group of women. I just really want to keep it a tight group so it doesn’t get to that elevated level of being overwhelming.
How important was it to add the Burton Ride Day and make that a part of the event?
Having the Burton Ride Day and having burtongirls.com support the event, I think and I hope the industry sees how committed they are to women’s progression. Having it be a part of Amusement Park was an amazing opportunity for the pros who come to ride at the event share their passion for snowboarding with all women. I love the opportunity for the pro girls to go out and ride with the public, and show them that we can all be out there enjoying the sport together. Just because we’re professionals at it doesn’t mean we can’t still help these girls and be out there with them. It makes us much more obtainable and I think that’s important. In order for our sport to grow on the women’s side especially, we need to be inviting and welcoming and what a better way than to make it hands-on and free to the public?
There’s been more women’s-only sessions that have come about, with riders like you spearheading them. Why do you think that is and what makes it all possible?
I see these women’s-only events as a platform for women’s progression because it gives us a safe and comfortable place to really learn tricks, however I still feel really strongly about being included in guys events. Having Mammoth and these resorts support us is huge, but I’m fronting a lot of this bill because it’s that important to me to see progression happen. I have guys riding with us out there and they’re there because they enjoy women’s snowboarding. I think that level playing field just needs to be seen, and since we don’t always have as many opportunities, these women’s only events are made to make sure that is going to be something that is carried out.
So what’s the future of the event and where do you see it going?
There is so much opportunity with Amusement Park to grow. It takes a lot of funds to make just one feature happen, but I would love to have a full course and make something where we can have rails, and a wall ride, and everything across the board so it’s very versatile. I want this to be something where women see this as a platform to come and ride and just celebrate how far we’ve come and how far we can go.