I met Ryan on his first Reno trip. Skinny shy kid that had all the tech tricks with style and pop. After a while the shy kid turned into a Reno Rager and crushed Demos and always stoked out the locals. After a devastating knee injury, Ryan flew under the radar for a few years. Now fully healed, Ryan is back at it and skating better than ever. Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls, the Ryan Denman interview for Wheel Bite. -ERL
My first Trip was August of 2000, it was with Caine Gayle , Rob Dyrdek, and Heath Brinkley (who was the Citystars filmer at the time). Caine set the trip up and I was excited to hit the road and start filming for my Street Cinema part. I really didn’t know what to expect, I had a few friends from high school who were in straight edge bands and had been to Reno to play shows and I had heard a few stories but I really didn’t know much about the place.
2. Given the amount of partying that took place, I’m surprised you were able to get down at the Demos. Did you have problems skating in the Reno heat the next day?
I got a rather late start on my partying, it actually started on that first Reno trip, maybe that’s why I was able to power through. My theory on Reno trips were we skate ALL day go out ALL night and do it again. Back then skating was all I had to do so if I went for 5 days with little sleep it was all good cuz I knew when I got home I could chill for a few days to recover. Reno was really the only place we did that because the Reno nightlife was a guarantee slam dunk back then. If it was a different city we would have been skating all night instead.
3. What are some of your favorite Reno trip tales?
Here are a few thoughts that come to mind…
Hot August nights, every hotel was sold out. End up having to stay at the Adventure Inn. Dyrdek and Heath sharing a room with the shower in the middle of the room.
Walking into the Valet at the Eldorado and running into Men’s Club girl 1 while hanging out with Men’s Club girl 2.
Premiering the City Stars video at the same place that is a spot in the video.
Passing the torch years later. Still happens on Reno trips to this day… brings a tear to my eye hahaha!
Dudes in suits waiting for a table, our crew rolling straight in and taking their table. The looks on their faces were priceless every time.
4. There was a lot of Reno spots in the City Stars Street Cinema video. What are some spots you liked skating?
I always liked the double set and the Convention Center rail, a lot of my skate trips to Reno I was hurt so the old spots I didn’t get to skate much. My all time favorite is the bump to ledge in the ditch… (Galena Ditch) every year I come back with a new trick I want to get there before we go home.
5. Didn’t you blow out your knee at the UNR double set?
Yeah, My knee was already blown though. I had shitty doctors telling me I was fine, the UNR blow out was the 4th time it had happened within a years time. After that I went to Joey Suriel’s Doc and got shit sorted out.
6. You’ve been coming to Reno almost every summer with multiple companies and homies. What would you tell newbies to get them to roll out with you to The Biggest Little City In The World?
It’s pretty simple, Reno has always had everything needed for a good skate trip. The spots and parks are good. The welcome we get from great friends when we get into town is like no other and there is always something to get into at night, usually trouble.
7. It’s funny how you can go to Vegas and think it’s crazy there and then Roll to Reno and think Vegas is for rookies. What’s your favorite Reno story to date?
Honestly man, I can’t answer that for a few reasons. It’s too hard to pick just one and also I can’t air out other peoples biz ya know?
8. The Men’s Club days were the best. How does it rank with any other titty bars you’ve been. Obviously I’m talking about before they lost the quality control on the dancers. There’s girls there now that wouldn’t have cut it as day girls before.
I used to always describe it like this to new comers… the hottest girl at any club you have ever been to would be the worst girl at the MC. I would then say imagine that and add in the fact they have a 4 star restaurant as well.
9. So when is the next Reno trip bud? With all these new spots, it’s time to get
the band back together.
Hopefully soon, it’s in the works for sure.
10. What was the story behind the “DENMAN’D” deal on The Berrics?
I was playing a warm up game with my friend Dario and was just getting the legs going thinking no biggie just a fun little game. He ends up winning cuz he has every inward heel on lock and I was super rusty at the time. Shit was long forgotten till months later I see the homies in AZ for Street League and we are at the hotel lobby bar where everyone is chilling. Paul and Heath tell me not to go anywhere… they had been waiting to get Dario and I in the same place to call Dario out in front of me because he had been calling getting beat in a game of SKATE getting Denman’d ever since. 5 mins later everyone there for the contest had heard the story and next thing I know we are walking to get dinner and Berra looks at everyone and says “ alright guys lets have a good night tonight, be safe and don’t get Denman’d. The joke went around all weekend and everyone had a laugh but by the last night I was like, I cant go out like that. So I mentioned to Berra I wanted a rematch on the Berrics (not actually thinking it would happen) and Mikey over heard and was hyped to make it happen and the rest is history.
11. What are you doing these days?
Skating everyday pretty much, I recently was hired as team manager for Plan B and now I’m able to be out in the streets again doing what I love.
12. Thanks for the memories Denman. All the kids that went to the Demos were always hyped on you skating. Got any shout outs to Reno?
Got to keep it Eric Lantto, Erok, Scott Waters, Darryl Dibatista, Damian Ruff, (I know I’m forgetting a few) thanks for the memories boys, lets make a few more. Shaver R.I.P.