Taylor Guitars recently partnered with the Tony Hawk Foundation to create a special series of custom guitars for a great cause. The eye-catching axes were inspired by several iconic graphics used on Hawk skateboard decks throughout the Birdman’s long and storied career, and were showcased as auction items at the 9th annual Tony Hawk Pro Skater HD Presents Stand Up for Skateparks fundraiser, held on Sunday, October 7 at the picturesque Green Acres Estate in Beverly Hills, California. The foundation provides funding and technical assistance to build public skate parks in low-income communities throughout the United States. More than 500 grants have been awarded in the U.S. since the foundation was established.
The event began at noon with a VIP reception featuring a display of paraphernalia signed by athletes and celebrities. Actor and former professional skater Jason Lee took the stage with actor/director Jon Favreau to discuss their ongoing support of the foundation. Among the attendees were Shaun White, Chuck Liddell, Bill Walton, Robert Trujillo, Michael Rapaport, A.C. Green, and David Spade.
Four of the custom Taylor auction guitars were 214ce models, each featuring a different deck graphic that was redesigned for the guitar top and custom-printed using a flatbed digital imaging process. A fifth custom guitar for the series was a GS Mini with rosewood laminate back and sides, which blended well with the caramel, black and gold color of the “Crowned” Hawk top design. Another featured Taylor item in the auction was a uniquely customized Katy Perry guitar from her documentary concert film Part of Me. The “Hawkized” Taylors and Katy Perry guitar together netted almost $15,000 for the foundation.
In addition to the auction, the family-friendly event featured booths from sponsors including SIGG, I Ride I Recycle, Olloclip, Quiksilver, Taylor Guitars and many more. There was also an inflatable slide, bungee run and vert ramp demo by some of skateboarding’s top athletes, including Andy McDonald, Kevin Staab, Lincoln Ueda, Lyn-Z Adams-Pastrana, and of course, Hawk himself. Platinum-selling alternative rock band Jimmy Eat World entertained guests with a blazing set of their hits, and throughout the day, folks stopped by the Taylor booth to relax under the awning and sample a healthy cross-section of the line, including an 814ce, K22ce, 710e, several GS Minis and a beautiful all-mahogany 12-string BTO. Booth visitors were also given a ticket for a chance to win one of three Baby Taylor guitars that were raffled off over the course of the afternoon, so plenty of guests made several stops at the booth.
The event successfully raised nearly $1 million for the foundation, with $27,000 of that earmarked for the construction of a skatepark for the Los Angeles community of San Pedro.
[List of Hawk designs for photo I.D. purposes: the red one is Full Skull, the silver one is Emblem, the blue-green is McSqueeb, and the gold one is Hawk Skull]