Erik Leon has been in snowboarding’s public eye since Bear Mountain’s first-gen installment of Sunday in the Parks in the late 2000’s. What very few know, though, is that Erik had a tough childhood growing up in Riverside, CA, where his family worked to make ends meet. Today, Erik is a world renowned snowboarder who has traveled the world filming video parts for the better part of the last decade. It was through these years that Erik started thinking of a strategy to break down the barrier of entry to snowboarding in regards to both products and events. Erik developed his CORE program as a way to help younger, underprivileged kids gain access to quality gear, allowing them to get out on the hill and do what we love most: snowboard.
Recently, Erik and the CORE Program partnered with Trollhuagen to put on “Core Meets Cause,” an event that helped raise money for the Cool Meets Cause Foundation. This is a Minneapolis based outreach program that focuses on making snowboarding accessible to underrepresented youth by breaking the barrier of cost.
Going forward, the CORE program sees similar opportunities to shine light and lend a helping hand to local charities around the United States, as well as work with Erik’s sponsors to create price point products designed to make purchasing new equipment a little more affordable.
CORE stands for Community Outreach Riding Equipment and the initiative has three pillars:
1. When making CORE products, sponsors should take steps toward producing them sustainably.
2. CORE products should be as affordable as possible.
3. CORE products should be connected to community outreach efforts.