November 16th, 2015
The tour is the largest freerunning and parkour tour ever executed. BAM Academy sponsored the kick off to the American leg of the tour on March 28. Special guests at the Austin event were Team Farang’s international champions, Pasha ‘The Boss’ Petkuns and Jason Paul along with Tempest’s iconic, Michael ‘Frosti’ Zernow.
The event began at BAM Academy with an open jam. 140 young athletes gathered to celebrate the Austin freerunning and parkour community. Attendees had the chance to train with the pros and score exclusive merchandise.
Eight lucky VIPs were treated to an exclusive meet and greet on the OTE tour bus. As a VIP, it was a surreal experience to have Jesse La Flair hand me pizza while I watched Jason Paul play “Call of Duty”. Not to mention Pasha in the back dancing with a foam roller on his head.
After the BAM jam, the event moved to the UT campus. Parkour is traditionally practiced outdoors and the pros encouraged athletes to value safety and self-expression. Photographer and freerunner, Dana Rasmussen, was grateful for the lesson. “Being able to train with these amazing athletes is a one-of-a kind opportunity. I learned the most important thing is to be yourself and be comfortable with your movement.”
The event concluded at AMC Barton Creek Square with the sold out American premiere of “From Here to There”. The film was an inspiring account of Jesse and Cory’s European tour in 2013. The film documented the successes and failures they experienced while entering pro competitions.
After the screening, Jesse and Cory hosted a Q&A session with the audience. They discussed the differences between European and American practices and what it’s like to be a professional freerunner. BAM Coach Kody Cheung asked, “My students want to know how to be like you guys. What should I tell them?”
Do what makes you happy – Cory DeMeyers
Jesse admitted, “I have thousands of followers, but I still had to prove skills to get respect…There’s nothing special about me.” Cory emphasized, “Do what makes you happy. Get rid of your plan B…If you want something done, make it happen.”
Off The Edge continues the 15-city tour through May. The team will document their adventures with the “Off the Edge” Web Series. Keep an eye on their FaceBook page for the Austin recap episode to be released soon. Check out their website to pre-order the “From Here to There” documentary.