Ritual Skateboards was originally created by Adam Bauer and Adam Ferguson; two native Coloradans from Woodland Park, Colorado. Their original vision was to create a "Ritual Killers" board series, which would play on Hollywood movie characters, such as Jason and Freddy Kruegar, but upon further deliberation, the duo gave birth to Ritual Skateboards. The company was officially formed during the summer of 2008 in Colorado Springs. Mr. Bauer took on legal ownership and team management of the newly founded entity, while Mr. Ferguson supported the brand with new ideas and contracts from underground metal bands; which, at the time, was Ritual's main source of income, as the musicians would specifically order boards from us using their authentic artwork. Zoroaster, Iron Weed, Torche, and Early Man (designed) were some of the bands we had the pleasure of doing business with.
On one particular summer day in 2008, Mr. Bauer made a trip to Goose Gossage Skatepark, the first official concrete park of the town. His objective was to meet with local skateboarders in the area and gain feedback for his newly established endeavor. Upon arrival, a lone teenager was the only soul enjoying the park. After further observation, something distinctive about the kid captured Mr. Bauer's attention, as he quickly befriended the young man, told him about his board company, and asked him to take a blank prototype deck for examination. A few days later, Mr. Bauer met again with his newly found companion, Ryan Heier, to discuss his assessment of the first Ritual board. "Everything feels good." is about as thorough as his response was at the time, as Mr. Heier is naturally shy and introverted. Adam took his word for it and launched their first order of decks. The next step was to find ambassadors for his company; Ryan was the first skateboarder to start riding for Ritual. Shortly afterwards, Chad Coker, Josh Worley, Jake Henke, and Jayme Lobato were recruited and added to the unofficial squad...
For the next two years, everyone worked very hard to help promote the brand and have as much fun together as possible. Adam was always very generous and selfless towards the local skateboarders and treated them with the utmost respect. However, as is the very nature of the struggle of life, all good things must eventually come to a close. Pages turn and chapters end in the book of life... For multiple reasons beyond anyone's control, the company was dissolved and officially went delinquent in the summer of 2010. Adam Bauer handed over his skate team to Jon Easdon, owner and operator of Blindside Skateshop on the Westside of Colorado Springs. Adam and Jon grew up together in Woodland Park, so they were already good friends and trusted each other. Mr. Easdon was gracious towards the new arrivals and treated them as family. Mr. Easdon would go so far out of his way to help anyone and that characteristic is what defines true leadership.
In January of 2012, Adam Bauer offered to sell his Canon XH-A1 camcorder (which was used during the first Ritual era) to Ryan Heier for the sum of $1,000. Ryan had the money saved, so he linked up with his old comrade to start a journey of his own. With the help of the skate community, Mr. Heier quickly progressed his filming skills and started building the most comprehensive archive of Colorado Springs skateboarding footage ever created. Around the start of 2013, serious attempts at film-editing were made by Mr. Heier and a three year learning curve commenced. During the fall of 2014, discussions between Mr. Bauer and Mr. Heier regarding the fate of Ritual Skateboards started... They reached an agreement that Ryan would take over the company and guide it into the future. This was good news for the local video project he was working on, as it lacked an identity. Finally, at the beginning of 2016, Ritual: Part One & Part Two was completed and arrangements were made to re-form the company, only this time taking proper precautions to ensure its success. Mr. Heier spent another six months of that year to complete Blindside's first video project: BSOD, which premiered at Thunder and Buttons on October 21, 2016. BSOD is an abbreviation coined by Tony Whiteman and TJ Snody, which stands for "Blindside or Die."
Sadly, the struggle of local skateboarding in a small city is all too real. The largest local supplier of skateboarding goods, Hoyal Board Company (previously named Northshore), went out of business during the summer of 2016 after 28 years. The Hoyal family supported Colorado Springs for nearly three decades, so this was a huge blow for the local scene; as there only remained two skate shops now: Blindside and BC Surf and Sport. The fate of Blindside was yet to be seen, but with a falling customer base and a pricey overhead, the last core shop in town finally met its' demise on April 7th, 2017. There was talk of re-opening in a less expensive location, so we can only hope for the best. We just want to take a moment to say thank you to Jon Easdon for everything he's done for the local skateboarders here. We wish him the best in whatever he chooses to do, regardless of whether he re-opens Blindside...
Throughout skateboarding's history, there has been an apparent trend of death or survival. As a forest fire burns everything in its path, this destruction also leads to new growth and new life... Hardship spawns perseverance. Imagination fuels creativity. When times are tough, that's when it's most important to dig your heels in and stand your ground. That being said, Ritual Skateboards was officially re-registered with the State of Colorado in August of 2016 and I assure you that we are here to stay. This company was conceived under the assertion that skateboarding is about doing whatever your heart and soul truly desire. Whether you're the guy doing slappys in a grocery store parking lot, or the seasoned veteran carving around a pool, or a hungry savage hucking yourself down a massive staircase, we love all of you the same. There is nothing for you to prove to anyone, other than yourself, when it comes to you and your skateboard. We believe in intelligent self-expression with no limitations, rules, or thoughts as to what anyone else thinks of you. Skateboarding is an individualistic art form and we will do everything within our power to support this effort.