We saw Instagram posts of this tiny little girl on a pump track, cruising down the street, or flying out of a snake run, always in motion with her long blond hair flying in the wind. Next thing we knew we saw she was throwing a "Chica de Mayo" party to help raise funds for Girls Riders Organization. We wondered how someone who was only nine years old would pull off an event like this... Well, we needn't have wondered because Zoe is full of surprises that belie her young age. Read on to see what this little dynamo is up to next.
Who's Rad? Zoe Herishen
Home is? Northern New Jersey
Home park or skate spot is? Chelsea Piers, NYC
How long have you been skateboarding?
I’ve been skating the skateparks for a little over a year but I’ve been long boarding since I was 5.
What do you enjoy most about skateboarding?
I love vert. Dropping in is the best feeling in the world. It’s like being on a roller coaster but you’re not strapped in so it’s even more exciting!
Tell us about your board set up – what brand of deck, wheels, trucks?
Right now my park board is an ECC longboards skate deck with CORE trucks and Orangatang Onsens Wheels. I also have a really rad Silly Girl Skateboard deck that I won in a contest and just started riding. I stoked it out with Third Kind skate lights and Sunset Skateboard street wheels so it is super cool to ride at night or at the indoor skateparks!
Favorite music to skate to? I don’t really skate to music
Girls who skate that inspire you?
Well Brighton Zeuner is amazing! I really hope to skate with her some day! I also love Alexis Sablone. She is a great role model for me because she is wicked smart and a really sick skater too. I love school so this is important to me. She proves that you can focus on school and still crush it at the skatepark! Plus she is a NYC skater so she skates the same skateparks that I do.
Favorite place you've ever skated?
I loved Kona Skatepark in Florida. I probably did the snake run there about 100 times in two days! So much fun!
Tell us about some recent contests you have been in?
I actually competed in Chica de Mayo which was a pump track event for both longboards and shortboards. I wasn’t going to compete since it was my event but the rest of the skaters talked me into it. I came in first in 14U and also took first overall.
Tell us how you came up with the idea to throw your Chica de Mayo skate event?
I was skating the Brooklyn Bike Park pump track on my longboard. I noticed a guy there skating on his skateboard and it just hit me. I thought it was the perfect place to have both types of riders come to one event. I love to longboard and hit the skateparks. I wanted to have an event where my friends could come no matter what type of board they ride. I brought my idea to Girls Riders Org and they loved the idea and asked me to help them run it. It was an epic event!
Was it hard to organize?
No, because I had so much support from GRO founder Courtney Payne-Taylor and my parents. My mom organizes events for our PTA and I have always helped her. I have also organized two food drives so I had some experience. GRO NYC has the most amazing crew of girls so when they showed up to help the whole thing ran really smooth.
What would you tell girls who want to do this too?
Go for it! Don't be afraid that just because you are a kid nobody will take you seriously. Find support like I did. Girls Riders Organization can help you go for your dreams just like they did for me. Having a crew of girls all over the country to reach out to, and visit when I travel is amazing! There are crews all over the country and they are growing every day. Find a GRO crew or start one in your area. It’s the best decision I have ever made!
What was the best part about the day?
Seeing girls from all ages come together skating, competing, and just having fun! That was the best feeling! We had 5 year olds learning to skate and we had Forty year old moms learning to skate. We had skaters looking to compete and skaters just looking to meet other girl skaters. We even had a girl drive down from Boston just for the event! We keep in touch now and are good friends!
Favorite Trick or maneuver?
I love dropping in! It’s my favorite part of skating. I recently dropped in on a 12ft vert ramp in Riverside Park in NYC. It was crazy cool.
Who are your favorite girls to skate with?
My Girls Riders Organization NYC girls, especially Kendra, Ali, Bombette and Nina. We have the best time together! I also love visiting my Florida girls (Ava, Bree & Sophia) whenever I can. It’s always a great time skating & surfing with them!!
Which female skaters inspire you?
There are so many great pro girl skaters that inspire me I could never list them all! So I will tell you two that are not pros that really inspire me. Courtenay Payne-Taylor is a huge inspiration to me. She started GRO in a van that she lived in while she traveled the country trying to get more girls to skate. She went from place to place teaching girls and bringing them together at skateparks. It is pretty incredible to me that she has dedicated her whole life to inspiring other girls to skate. I am also very inspired by my friend Jaylee Dutcher who is an adaptive skater and rides for Box Wheelchairs. I saw her in a Life Rolls On video and I was blown away by her. She has spina bifida and does not let it stop her from being a fierce athlete. I reached out to her to tell her how amazing I thought she was. Now we are friends. We have never met but we Facetime and text and I really hope to meet her and skate together one day!! Whenever I think something is too hard I look at Jaylee’s videos and it inspires me to work harder!
Third Kind Beyond www.thirdkindbeyond.com
Vagabond Beach www.vagabondbeach.com
Syck Trix www.sycktrix.com
Balance Your Life Bracelets www.balanceyourlifebracelet.com
I also have to shout out Triple 8 helmets who keep me well protected by sending me new helmets and pads whenever I need them which is pretty often lately!! www.triple8.com
Three Things You Don't Know About Me
1. I play the ukulele and electric guitar
2. I am totally addicted to Camp Woodward Online Show
3. I am a HUGE math geek and when I am not watching You Tube videos of skating, I am usually on Prodigy math game
This summer I plan to really focus on my training. I am hoping to take my skating to the next level. I will also be working hard to get better at surfing because I truly love it. I am already working on my next idea with Girls Riders Org. I am hoping to combine my next event for them with a food drive to benefit a local food bank that I volunteer for. I have plans to travel with GRO this year as well. Some of our travel plans include Surf Expo, Exposure Skate and the grand opening of a rad new skatepark in Charleston, SC. I am super excited to join their mission to get more girls skating and can’t wait to meet tons of skaters and make lots of new friends!!
Make sure you follow Zoe at:
Facebook - Zoe Herishen
Instagram & Twitter - @zoeherishen