Longboard Haven is a name with deep roots in Toronto longboarding. The shop's first incarnation in 2006, as an underground operation, was run from the basement apartment of Patrick "P-Swiss" Switzer. Patrick has since become a top international downhill skateboarder, but it was he in conjunction with Mike "Smooth Chicken" McGown, and Adam "Joker" Winston, who made the original shop a reality. The Haven's namesake is a previously little known garage that core members of the Toronto skate community frequented for many years.
After Patrick's departure to the West coast, Longboard Haven was closed. Switzer worked with Rob Sydia, founder of GNAR Extreme Sports Management, to pursue his successful racing career on the professional downhill circuit. While Mr. Switzer found success, Ontario riders lost an invaluable source for the best advice and equipment.
Longboard Haven is again alive and well, owner Rob "Skater Dad" Sydia and co-founder Michael McGown have re-established Longboard Haven across from Moss Park on Queen Street East. The shop philosophy is simple, "if we won't ride it, we won't stock it", they focus on providing the best equipment, customer service and expertise. As a parent and active participant in the Ontario longboarding community, my goal is to provide a positive environment that acts as a living classroom, providing a glimpse into the history of the sport, while providing knowledge and advice to ensure every rider has the knowledge and advice to skate the streets safely. Together with our partners, we are working to develop strong connections within the industry and community. Our vision is to be the nucleus of Ontario skate, getting people involved, and advancing legitimacy for the sport we are so passionate about. We are dedicated to rigorous product evaluation, providing the best customer experience, offering a relaxed retail atmosphere for all levels of skaters, and furthering legitimacy for the sport and it's participants.
"You can take the skater out of the Haven, but never the Haven out of skating."