Established in 1977 by Dave Fairman, Fairman’s has a long and colorful history in the skateboarding scene. Many of the team riders have gone on to make names for themselves in professional skating, as well as in other media outlets.
The shop is now under new ownership, and the face and knowledge behind the store today is Mike Moll. When asked where the interest began, he suggests, “I was around eight and a half, and I might’ve caught the X Games, or I saw Brink for the first time on the Disney channel. That’s when I knew, this is the kind of stuff I want to be into.”
Shaking his head and laughing, he admits, “It was the first thing I was ever passionate about. It was funny to take something that serious at that young of an age.”
Self-described as a weird kid with few friends, Mike was drawn into the world of skateboarding immediately. “There’s plenty of ways to fill the void,” he says, “You can drink, or you can do drugs, or get involved with another [destructive] activity, but mine happened to be skateboarding. And I saw people hurting themselves on their skateboards, and doing dangerous things, and that kind of energy attracted me somehow.”
From that point forward, he seriously dedicated himself to developing his skills, practicing alone for hours at a time in the basement of his home. Once he found other people who were also as invested in skateboarding as he was, and made friends that shared his love for the sport, it became his whole world. At sixteen years old his hard work paid off when he became sponsored to skate on the Fairman’s team.
It has been a long road since skating in his parents basement, and Mike is the first to admit it hasn’t been without it’s challenges. But his sheer force of will and commitment to doing what he loves, while educating others coming up in the sport, is second to none. He advises young skaters to keep it light, go out there and meet new people, network, have fun and don’t worry about going pro. His story is a testament to the power of something that started as merely an outlet for nervous energy, and evolved into a passionate hobby and way of life.
To Mike, Fairman’s is more than just a shop to buy skate gear at; it’s a powerful representation of a grassroots culture, one that has permeated into many aspects of popular culture and life. Fairman’s holds the integrity of the sport as first priority, while maintaining relationships with customers, and providing quality gear and apparel to everyone from the beginners to the pros. After all, they’re skating into their 40th year, and hope to be skating for years to come.
The rest is history.