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AUGUST 25 - SEP 01, 2015

Tony Hawks Extensive Line of Retail Fits Perfectly With Spohn Ranch Business Plan

By Mike Hudson

August 25, 2015

Arrow shows the location of new skatepark.


It’s not a skatepark, it’s a shopping center!

That’s what skatepark developer and Spohn Ranch founder and President Aaron Spohn says. His company has been hired by the city of Niagara Falls to design the skatepark adjacent to the decrepit Sal Maglie Stadium in Hyde Park here.

“Once the park is open, we encourage brands and retailers to use our parks as event space to promote their businesses as well as the skateboarding industry as a whole,” Spohn said.

Promotion in the social media is essential for proper marketing, Spohn added.

“When the world’s best professional skateboarders film a YouTube video montage at one of our parks, we now have a great tool for educating municipalities on how skateparks are meant to function,” he said.

And then the money just rolls right in.

“With brands and retailers using our parks as contest space or stops on cross-country tours, we can also entice cities by showing them that high-quality skateparks can have a positive economic impact in the community,” Spohn said.

One of the biggest brand names in skateboarding today just so happens to be that of Tony Hawk, generally ranked as the second best skateboarder who ever lived behind Mark Gonzales, and a one man marketing juggernaut who rivals Sam Walton of Wal-Mart fame insofar as the extent of his retail catalogue is concerned.

There are Tony Hawk skateboards and Tony Hawk Playstation games, Tony Hawk fashions, bicycles, amusement park rides and movies. And then there are the tours, events in which Tony Hawk himself, along with an assembled group of select acolytes ride the like Magnificent Seven (or nine or however many there are) into your Spohn Ranch skatepark equipped town, um, hawk their wares.

Hey, it worked in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin!

 The stuff ain’t cheap. One of the Tony Hawk Playstation games can set you back $50, a hoodie from his clothing line goes for $35 and even a humble water bottle costs $12.95. A signed Tony Hawk skateboard deck goes for $450.

Sixty bucks will buy you a miniature digital video camera you can wear on your helmet as you skate and, for just a bit more, you can get bedroom window curtains with Tony Hawk’s name emblazoned on them or a cool back to school notebook with cover art done by none other than Tony Hawk.

He sells undershorts and iPhone covers, computer accessories and circuit boards, polo shirts and T shirts and bumper stickers and helmets and backpacks and license plate frames.

According to Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster and Community Development Director Seth Piccirillo, it was not for profit Tony Hawks Foundation’s incredibly generous $10,000 grant that put the Niagara Falls skatepark on the fast track.

The money was immediately turned over to Tony Hawks’ Southern California homeboy, Arron Spohn, to design a skatepark for Niagara Falls.

Spohn stands to make at least $100,000 on the deal if his company goes on to be selected as the park’s developer.

And now he says he wants, “brands and retailers to use our parks as event space to promote their businesses as well as the skateboarding industry as a whole.”

Could it be that the brands and retailers Spohn is talking about consist largely of Tony Hawk?

It’s Niagara Falls and it’s an election year. And we’re talking about Mayor Paul Dyster.

Jump to your own conclusions.






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