BMX riders from all over southwestern B.C. made the trek to Salt Spring for the first annual Salt Spring Island Shin Dig Jam on Saturday at Kanaka Skate Park.
Organizer Malachi Savage got the idea for the event from similar jams that were held at the skate park years ago.
“There used to be a lot of jams at the skate park, but I was too young to be a part of it,” he said. “I realized the last one was in like 2012. People haven’t really been taking initiative to do it anymore.”
Savage reached out to the BMX communities on Vancouver Island and the mainland to promote the jam, which began at 10 a.m.
Riders took turns on different lines in the park. Savage brought music and snacks to the event.
Though the rain slowed down the riding, the park was able to dry out and people stayed well into the afternoon.
“I just did it because it’s a nice fun thing to do and it gets kids outside,” Savage said.
Jams like this are open to riders of all skill levels. They are fun, relaxed events where riders just come out and hang out at the skate park with like-minded people. Participants ranged in age from 11 to adult. Savage sees the event as a way to promote the scene on the island, and to get the younger generation more interested in riding.
“It’s something I wanted to do as a kid, so it’s nice to let other people experience it,” he said. “There’s a lot of up and coming kids from the middle and elementary schools. I can see that they’re going to get good at biking, so if I can offer something that’ll help I might as well do it.”
Salt Spring is home to a small community of dedicated riders, and Savage hopes that the annual event will continue to build Salt Spring as a BMX destination.
“Me and my buddies, there are about five of us, we ride almost every day,” he added. “For the first one, I think we got a good turnout. I think it will start to grow over the years,” he said.