Search My Account
      Gallery Museum

Staff Picks

Have 'Staff Picks' emailed to you when it's published. Sign up here.

Willi Winkels, Skateboarding, and Snowboarding

Willi Winkels, Skateboarding, and Snowboarding

Posted by Allison on April 17, 2019

Half-pipes, vert ramps, ollies, and kickflips. Do any of these words bring back memories of your youth? If so, you have likely picked up a skateboard or two in your day. If not, there is still time to be inspired by this incredible sport, even if it's from the comfort of your chair! A local connection to the alternative sport scene is Willi Winkels.

Wee Willi Winkels is a local legend and his contributions to the skateboarding and snowboarding worlds can’t be understated. Willi’s innovations in skateboard manufacturing had a great impact on the sport and many of the big names in skateboarding in the late 70s and early 80s, along with kids and teens of the same generation, could be found riding a WWW-made board. Willi and his friends tested his snowboard prototypes on the slopes of Blue Mountain, and Blue Mountain Resort has honoured Willi with a run in his namesake. Learn about Willi Winkels and his fascinating life at (search “Willi Winkels”) where you can see pictures of his snowboard prototypes, skateboards, images of his friends and family, pictures of the Wee Willi Winkels Skateboard Team, iconic memorabilia, stories from skateboarding pros like Doug Teramoto and Lonnie Toft, and more.

Community members are also encouraged to share any stories or pictures they have about Willi, his skateboards, or other creations at

If you’re keen for more skateboarding and snowboarding inspiration, check out Theconcrete wave: the history of skateboarding by Michael Brooke, and the locally-produced film Shipwrecked by Mountain Goat Film Company, which features young freestyle athletes who call Collingwood and the Blue Mountains area home. The films Snow People and REEL History feature local snow sports and they’ll also inspire athleticism in every season. All items are available from the Blue Mountains Public Library.

While compiling this online project, I have become fascinated with skateboard history and I admit that I have been tempted to try out the sport. You’re never too late to learn something new, right? Well…we’ll see about that part, but I’ll see you on BiblioBoard in the meantime!

Image of Willi Winkels riding one of his WWW skateboards. Image part of The Winkels Collection found on

view all

©2018 All Rights Reserved. The Blue Mountains Library. Website developed & hosted by Running Tide Inc.