|: Bugger the sponsers.....I did have a couple a while ago(airwalk)....they dont really look after you and try and get you to do crappy demos on crappy ramps..lol...Its not worth it...Kids allways ask me if Im sponsored...I tell them not even to think about it.....they go looking for it....if your good enough it will come to you anyway...Its really not a big part of skating for me at all...
I wasn't really talking about specific "skate" sponsors. More along the lines of "people" type sponsors. Soft drink companies, fast food chains, clothing chains, etc. You don't need to target the skaters. Put up a ramp and they will come out of the woodwork. You want to get the nonskating public out there to develop an appreciation and acceptance for the sport, and to spark an interest in potential new skaters. They can't find you if you're on an old ramp under a bridge somewhere. By all means we shouldn't "sell out" to big business, but unless you bring in new skaters, the companies manufacturing skate equipment won't have a market and will stop producing. Skates don't last forever. With fewer skaters it will be hard to convince local politicians to invest in ramps and skate parks, and the kids will be stuck skating back in parking lots.
If you think promoting is a waste of time, let me give you an example. I have a son with severe autism. My wife and I are members of the Autism Society. She is the former president. A few years ago our chapter of the society wanted to run a "Fun Fair" to raise money for the chapter and increase awareness about autism. The members of the group went to every type of business you can think of for sponsorship. We had beer companies, restaurants, clothing stores, the fire department, even a professional magician donating goods and services. Because of this and free advertising on radio, tv, and newspapers the event was a big success, raising a lot of money and awareness about autism (it's not exactly the most well known condition or charity around). People came out in droves in spite of the fact it literally poured down rain that day.
What is this leading to? Just that if you want your sport to survive, be a goodwill ambassador for it and take advantage of every opportunity to promote it. Run your own little "competitions" in your neighbourhood, do whatever. Just be positive about roller skating. It's healthy, it's fun and it can get some kids off the street.