Windells Academy visits K2

25 Jun, 2010

During the off-days at camp most of the camp is quiet as staff and campers are non-existent but the Windells Academy students stay busy with on-snow and off-snow activities.  On Friday the van was loaded up with Academy kids to head to Seattle where K2 Sports is located and were given a tour of the entire operation behind K2.  I was able to tag along on the adventure to see more in depth into the Academy and what experiences they have as students.  Huge thanks to Mike Powell at K2 for giving the tour.

Arriving at K2 Snowboards!

One of the best things about visiting K2 is the history behind the company which is present all around the offices from the time you enter the building.  They have so much history in skiing/snowboarding that you can walk around just staring at the old photographs & ads forever.

Windells Academy student Nick trying out the K2 motorcycle

We headed into the warehouse portion of the K2 offices where everything is stored and it’s massive.  K2 is a huge company with a variety of companies underneath them like Ride, 5150, Line and a bunch of others.

The warehouse is the biggest one I’ve ever been in and complete with their own gym and skate section.

K2’s workout gym area for employees to stay in shape and ready for anything

The skate section

The Windells Academy kids getting the full tour about building skis and snowboards from beginning to end

Some portions of the tour were not able to be photographed especially in the testing/building area but they had a rad sewing machine that was so impressive and would design the fiberglass around a wood core.

Everyone in the K2 Office portion complete with their own bar outside of the offices.

One of my earlier Industry Profile Interviews was K2’s graphic designer Jered Garrison and ran into him in the K2 office busy at work designing more graphics for K2.

In the K2 graphic design offices the guys decided it was time for a contest for the Windells Academy kids in order to win a belt and a the new Oakley McConkey goggles.  For the belt, the guys had to chug a can of Red Bull which definitely was fun to watch but also made the kids hyped up for the evening.

For the Shane McConkey goggles, it was a pull-up contest in the K2 gym.  This is where the academy kids couldn’t beat the academy staff.  Academy student Jared ended up taking home the goggles.

Down the hall from the K2 office is the Ride Snowboards office, I had stopped by to do a tour with Ride a couple months ago which you can read all about here but was fun to check it out again and say hi!

On the way out of the offices, I made sure to stop by the K2/Ride design offices where Paul McGinty and Sean Tedore rock the house and was able to catch up with them.  Paul has an upcoming interview for Industry Profiles so stay tuned for that!  Tedore was showing me the latest World Cup videos

Windells Academy Mike Hanley on the tour keeping busy running Windells Academy

After the visit to K2 we headed into Seattle to show the kids Pike Place Market and hang out for a little bit before driving back to Hood.

Myself in Pike Place Market with a big ice cream cone

The Windells Academy is a pretty crazy idea but gives the kids access to school and action sports like skiing, snowboarding or skateboarding.  During trips like we took to Seattle, they would do homework or chill on the drive and with WIFI in the vehicle we could be all online the whole drive.

About the author


From the beginning of time, I was Shannon. From the beginning of snowboarding, I was Shay. From the beginning of online communities, I was Shayboarder. In the end, I’m the writer, photographer, editor, publisher, guru of sorts, product tester, curvy girl, and most importantly the snowboarder behind it all. Follow me on this journey through snowboarding, mountain biking, traveling and fun experiences!

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