Frank Hirata has joined the Planet Earth squad, and his pro model is available now. In June, Planet Earth will release its new video, a 30-minute project by veteran-filmer Dave Schlossbach. Danny Montoya recently turned pro for Rhythm.

Willie Wonka, anyone? Bones is running a contest during the months of May, June, and July by hiding 361 winning tickets inside boxes of the new China Bones Reds bearings. These tickets will entitle the bearers to a range of prizes, including an expense-paid trip for two to the Bones factory in Santa Barbara, California. May the best skater win!

Balance Skateboards welcomes Bo Turner to its pro team, which also includes Bill Weiss and Matt Milligan. Look for Bo’s new model out soon.

Alias Distribution launched the Arcade skateboard company at the spring ASR Trade Expo. The Arcade team consists of pros Tyrone Olson, Sad, and Jason Rogers, and ams Daniel Haney, Steve Hernandez, and Dan Connelley. Rogers will also be handling team manager duties, and Cleon Peterson is the art director.

Andy Roy and Paul Ulrich are the most recent additions to the Counter Culture skate team.

Donny Barley has joined the Element pro team.

Birdhouse did some “spring cleaning” of their amateur team. The new Birdhouse am roster includes Ali Cairns, Brian Sumner, and sixteen-year-old JeffLenoce.

Former TWS photo contributor (circa 1987) Andy Bittner has recently been hired by East Coast Urethane as Distribution Manager, a new position created by ECU to provide an increased level of service to distribution-level customers.

Dave Mayhew has joined the A-Team, which will be on tour in August with the Blind and All City teams as they trek across the U.S. The Blind team will tour Canada in early June, followed by Speed Demons Geoff Rowley, Rune Glifberg, and Mike Crum. Later that month, the All City team tours the major capitals of Europe, and in late July the World Industries team joins the Vans Warped Tour for five weeks.

NHS has released the first issue of Strange Notes video “megazine.” The video compendium to the printed team ‘zine will come out three times a year and features footage of NHS-product team riders. The paper version of Strange Notes is quarterly and will double its size to 32 pages with the next issue.

NHS is going online with a Web site that will feature team and product info, as well as special ordering capabilities for shops only. Check it out at www.nhs-inc.com

The Santa Cruz and Creature teams won’t be touring this summer, but instead will be traveling with NHS filmer Aaron Jones to capture some footage for upcoming videos, skate a couple demos, and attend the European contests. Watch for them skating spots near you.

K&K Services of Buck Hills Falls, Pennsylvania offers complete insurance coverage for all skatepark operations. For more information, write to K&K at: Golf Drive, Box 53, Buck Hill Falls, Pennsylvania 18323; or call: 1-800-233-3194.

The International Network for Flatland Freestyle Skateboarding has released a new issue of its newsletter, Flatline. The INFFS was formed to popularize flatland freestyle skateboarding and encourage competitions. The newsletter offers updates on prominent freestyle skaters from around the world and other issues affecting the sport. Subscriptions are available for fifteen dollars (U.S.) from INFFS, c/o Stefan Åkesson, Abbedissavägen 15, 746 95 Bålsta, Sweden. Also check out the Flatline Web site at:

http://home2.swipnet.se/~w-20627/

The lifornia Skate Lab opened its doors late last year in Simi Valley, California. The park features a street course, mini ramp, and bowl¿all built by Tim Payne. All of the ramps are surfaced with Finnish birch, but the most unique feature of the indoor park is the skateboard museum, which includes everything from steel-wheeled homemade boards of the 50s to current pro models. Curator Todd Huber says the collection continues to grow as pros visit the park and sign their own models for the Hard Rock-style display of modern decks. Recently featured on Nickelodeon television’s Nick News program, California Skate Lab has been a hive of activity that Huber says extends into the wee hours for closed pro sessions.

Skaters Union has begun outsourcing its screen-printing work, and is selling its screen-shop fixtures: screens, ink, silk-screening skateboard platforms, and racks. For more information, call Skaters Union at: (408) 688-3900.

Now back from a 29-day Trans-Canadian tour that ended at the Slam City Jam in Vancouver, B.C., the Tum Yeto teams are back at home. Foundation has added am Shane Heyl, and pro Brad Staba is skating again after tearing his liver in March. New-model Toy Machine pro Elissa Steamer took first place in the women’s street contest at Slam City Jam.

After releasing its new video, Mixtape, the Zoo York crew has been busy developing new products for the summer, including a new concave for its boards and new wheels for pros Harold Hunter and Robbie Gangemi. Filmer R.B. Umali is producing a new video, to be distributed by Zoo, with footage of several New York skaters. Also in the works at Zoo is a 24-inch cruiser bicycle to debut at the San Diego ASR Trade Expo in September, and a cargo-style BMX pant designed for BMXer Robby Morales.

Several new skatepark projects are inviting corporate sponsorship. The Foundation for Alternative Sports and Education (FASE)is planning to build a series of nonprofit alternative-sports “theme parks” in California and Utah. The parks will be between 30,000 and 100,000 square feet, with facilities for skating, BMX, arena soccer, mountain-boarding, mountain-biking, rock climbing, roller hockey, sand volleyball, and more. For more information about sponsorship opportunities, call FASE at: (760) 438-7504.

The City of Wilmington, North Carolina is designing a 10,000-square-foot skatepark. This concrete facility will also feature company signage along the inside of the perimeter fence. For more information call: (910) 341-7855.

The City of San Marcos, California has donated land for a concrete public skatepark, and proponents are now trying to raise 60,000 dollars to complete the funding. Companies are invited to make donations at any level, but park signage is available for donations of 1,000 dollars and up. The park will be named the Richard Johnson Memorial Skatepark, in memory of the young Vista, California skateboarder who was killed earlier this year. For more information about making donations, call Sherry Watson at: (760) 732-3447.

DSS Sports Group, an importer and dealer of snowboard and skateboard equipment in St. Petersburg, Russia, is expanding its lines and invites skateboard companies to contact them. DSS can be reached by fax at: 011-7-812-238-8320.

Geometric Construction enters the fray of board manufacturers with its own brand, Firewood. Based in San Diego County, Geometric has been manufacturing traditional seven-ply and six-ply composite skateboards for three years. For more information, call: (760) 721-6798.

Several skate camps will be operating this summer:

Snow Valley Mountain Sports Park in Running Springs, California will host its annual summer skate camp from June 21 to August 23. The focus of the curriculum will be skateboarding at Snow Valley’s 20,000-square-foot The Lot skatepark, but will also include all-terrain boarding, mountain biking, fishing, and swimming. For more information, call: (909) 867-2751.

The Mission Valley YMCA in San Diego, California will also host a camp this summer at its brand-new skatepark. There will be eleven sessions running from June 16 to August 28. For more information, call: (619) 298-3576.

Canada’s Young Life Skate Camp opens for its third summer this August. Organized by the Young Life Christian organization, the camp will feature instruction by pros Richard Mulder, Lennie Kirk, Ray Barbee, Daewon Song, and others. The camp will again be held at the Green Bay Bible Camp in British Columbia, with weekly sessions running from August 30 to September 3. Young Life will hold regular contests for campers, and is accepting product donations to be used as prizes. Banner sponsorship is also available. For more information, call: (250) 768-5884.

of the curriculum will be skateboarding at Snow Valley’s 20,000-square-foot The Lot skatepark, but will also include all-terrain boarding, mountain biking, fishing, and swimming. For more information, call: (909) 867-2751.

The Mission Valley YMCA in San Diego, California will also host a camp this summer at its brand-new skatepark. There will be eleven sessions running from June 16 to August 28. For more information, call: (619) 298-3576.

Canada’s Young Life Skate Camp opens for its third summer this August. Organized by the Young Life Christian organization, the camp will feature instruction by pros Richard Mulder, Lennie Kirk, Ray Barbee, Daewon Song, and others. The camp will again be held at the Green Bay Bible Camp in British Columbia, with weekly sessions running from August 30 to September 3. Young Life will hold regular contests for campers, and is accepting product donations to be used as prizes. Banner sponsorship is also available. For more information, call: (250) 768-5884.