BayGame SF With Jackson Ratima
Now San Francisco has a BMX shop to call it's own
17 Oct 2016
Intro, interview and photos by Bryce Bartlett / Additional riding photo by Devin Feil
When news broke that Jackson Ratima was planning to open a BMX shop in San Francisco, I could hardly contain my enthusiasm. It was truly a breath of fresh air for Bay Area BMX. The Bay Area has always been an awesome scene with its iconic spots and countless amazing riders. Although, as of late it almost seems as if the scene has slowed down a bit. Maybe I'm wrong, and maybe I'm just comparing it to everyone pumping out a million web edits a week down in Southern California. Either way, its dudes like Jackson that remind you that everything up here is alive and kickin'. Whether it be opening a new BMX shop, organizing a BayGame jam, or just getting out and working on the Percept Video with Bob Randel and friends, Jackson seems to always be working on something and getting the BMX community together. It looked like almost every rider in the Bay Area came out to support Jackson, BayGameSF, and the local scene as a whole during the inaugural shop event. I made it out to the opening shindig to hangout, snap a few photos, and ask Jackson some questions about the new shop.
What made you want to open a BMX shop in San Francisco?
I was born here and grew up riding in the city and it was always something I wanted our scene to have. I hated the fact that the only shop around downtown only sold Fusion and Snafu stuff. I lived in LA for a couple years and before moving back I knew this is something I was planning on doing here. I grew up with 2hip and Solid being around and having a real presence around here, now theres not so much of that and I think its important to kind of keep that tradition of keeping it lit alive. Anytime I was at a 2 hip event or somewhere the Solid guys were it was always wild. Kids in LA have so many local brands and pros to be around and learn from and hopefully this, although not a bike company, kinda fills that void around here. We've been filming for Percept lately and every time we go out we'd end up talking about getting something going in Northern California for Northern California. Real rider owned street shit.
Have you always wanted to open a shop? Or is this a bit of a newer idea that came about?
Yea, I always wanted to open a shop. At first the plan for this space was to just have a little clubhouse type of deal for the homies where we could hangout and sell BayGame stuff and other friends stuff too but I started getting hit up constantly about selling parts or getting people parts so I figured now is the right time. I've always made BayGame shirts and always kept the idea of opening a shop in the back of my mind.
Seems like the shop came together pretty quick since the initial announcement of you opening a shop. Did you have any key players in helping get the shop looking good so fast?
As soon as I got the keys I was in here trying to set up. It came pretty much ready to go but my buddies Tomy, Dan, Goose and Black Goose all helped me get it crackin. I already had displays and a few other pieces tucked in my storage ready for when I got the right place. I still got a bit to finish up and a lot more product to add.
The location of the shop is pretty prime considering its proximity to downtown. Was a good location something you were searching for? Or did it just kind of present itself at the right time?
At first the goal was to open in Oakland because I figured there was no way I would ever be able to afford anything in San Francisco. For about a year I would look online for spots and there were a few others that I had checked out but once I saw this one I knew I had to jump on it or I'd be kicking myself in the ass later. So many spots around its perfect. Still can't believe it
"Talking about getting something going in Northern California for Northern California. Real rider owned street shit."
Do you think having a BMX shop in San Francisco will help the local scene grow as a whole and get more people stoked on BMX?
I'm hoping to really just bring all the different scenes around the Bay Area into one central place. I think it will just expand everyones network of friends or people to ride with. Just 2 days ago someone from Poland came in and while he was hanging out he met some local kids from the city. They live in a neighborhood that isn't too friendly so the chances of them riding with or meeting someone from Poland might not be too good but the shop made that happen. I've been fortunate enough to travel a little bit and the one thing thats the same everywhere I've been is the BMX connection. Automatic homies.
What brands will you be carrying at the shop?
At the moment we carry Stolen, Cult, S&M, Fiction, Further and a couple local brands like SJ Califas, Lil Mikeys Beeswax, Fourohate and First Rule. In a few weeks we will have stuff from Skapegoat, Animal, Lotek, Stranger and Primo with plans to get a few more.
Is the store going to be strictly BMX? Or will you be carrying other brands as well?
BMX only. Fuck everyone else.
Any big plans in the near future for the shop, other than the recent opening party?
LMB street swarm October 23 and the First Rule Halloween ride the week after I believe. A lot of people asked if we are going to do any kind of weekly rides so we will have to figure that one out soon.
Any shout outs?
Thanks to anyone reading this and everyone who picked up a tool or hooked me up with product to get the shop going. I owe you one.
665 Eddy St. Suite A
San Francisco, CA 94109
BayGame X DIG - Pack Flips Not Backflips
Over 8 minutes of superb San Francisco street - More Info
"...one thing thats the same everywhere I've been is the BMX connection. Automatic homies."
And one Hoffman Lucky Lady
Age is a state of mind