Wakeboarder.com recently teamed up with SkiChair.com to giveaway a wakeboard chair to the person who best described what the chair was and what it meant to them.
There were many outstanding entries, but we picked the following entry from Captain Tim Cook of the US military as the winner, and I think you'll see why from his entry:
"I grew up in Florida and learned to water ski when I was four years old. The tug of an old Wellcraft and a couple of runs on a set of trainer skis later sparked a love affair with the water that is still burning strongly today.
That fire carried me through high school, where I had my first opportunity to wakeboard. At this point, wakeboarding was still in its infancy. Anyhow, one run on a Skurfer (yes, the foam filled, surf shaped, huge finned thing that most people cannot relate to) in the early 90's and I was hooked. From that pivotal day I have climbed back aboard a slalom ski only twice.
My daily routine during high school was working just enough to be able to afford to fuel my uncle's bass boat so that we could wakeboard on weekday afternoons.
Upon graduating high school, I felt compelled to give something back to the country that birthed our greatest passion: wakeboarding. I joined the military and spent four years stationed in New York. As you might imagine, military pay, combined with the New York climate placed a serious damper on my opportunities to wakeboard.
From New York, the Army moved me to Texas and I purchased a boat at the first opportunity. I have spent the past two years affording lesser fortunate soldiers the opportunity to participate in our beloved culture. I cannot count the number of soldiers that I have been fortunate enough to have on my boat. I lead a bunch of men whom are asked to do the impossible on a daily basis, and this is the least I can do to relieve the stress in their lives.
This past year, however, our duty was called into service. I am currently deployed to Iraq with the 4th Infantry Division. The job is tough and I have seen more death than I care to think about (both friendly and enemy). Yet, we know why we are here and we are proud of the job we are doing.
One of the things that keep me going is the opportunity to continue to spread our lifestyle to others. My issues of Wakeboarding Magazine are among the most popular periodicals we have circulating in my Task Force.
Additionally, I print off every new feature from Wakeboarder.com to pass around. And even though my boat sits in storage at this moment, it is getting the rest it will need to accommodate my soldiers and I this coming spring as we plan for redeployment.
I have been fortunate enough to see the progression of our sport from its inception to the current. Again I have been fortunate enough to spread this lifestyle to those less fortunate than I. The bench and chairs are a true expression of my lifestyle and why I am giving up a year of my life to fight this war. Protecting our freedom will allow us to wakeboard for generations to come. And if I am fortunate enough to win this contest, I will proudly place these pieces of furniture in my unit's recreation room, affording my men a place to relax and a seat upon which to dream about our next trip to the lake.
Captain Tim Cook"
Wow. Whether you agree with the situation in Iraq or not, I think most people would agree that Captain Cook has the right idea about wakeboarding and what it means, and he definitely does not take the sport for granted. We hope this gives you a good perspective on how you should look at wakeboarding for 2004, and we hope Captain Cook and his fellow soldiers enjoy the Wake Chair from SkiChair.com.