Nike SB Dunk Low 'HUF'

My name’s Sam, I’m one of the owners of Welcome. I’d like to tell you a story, it might seem a little braggy but there is a point to it so please don’t judge me too harshly.
(If this all looks a little too long to read and all you care about is the entry mechanism for the raffle then skip down to the photo of the shoes, and read from there.)
A few years ago, back when I still had a proper job alongside doing my thing at Welcome, my good friend and colleague Samir and I were visiting our then employers HQ in Orange County. It was a fairly long trip which ran over the weekend so we found ourselves with a couple of days off, Samir had some personal business he needed to attend to in LA so we hired a car and drove in to the city.

We met Samir's friends in a restaurant on Fairfax Ave for lunch, he took care of his business and then we headed off to meet Eric Koston, someone who I’d met a few times over the years when I'd worked for Nike and whom Samir had been friends with since his sponsored days in the 90s. We decided to go skate and followed Eric to The Berrics.
On the drive over I started to get nervous, I wanted to skate but wasn’t sure I was up to performing my late 30s version of skateboarding amongst some of the best skateboarders in the world. It was a short drive and Eric arrived ahead of us, as we pulled up in to the parking bays at the front of the building I could see him unlocking the gates over the front doors. I felt a wave of relief as I realised that the place was fully locked up and for the time being at least, we were the only ones there. Incredibly, it stayed that way and the three of us had a really fun low impact session for a couple of hours.

After leaving The Berrics, Eric went home and Samir and I headed to a coffee shop down the street where we met Giovanni Reda, I don’t recall if Samir had arranged this or if we just bumped in to him but we sat for a while and those two caught up. I don’t really remember what they or we were talking about, but the conversation somehow turned to Keith Hufnagel, at which point Reda suggested we pay him a surprise visit. I’d been happy on the sidelines, quietly coming down from the buzz of skating The Berrics and the relief that it had just been us… and now we're talking about visiting another skateboarding icon, at his home.

So, off we went, to Keith's house. We arrived latish in the afternoon, knocked on the door, and Keith answered. He was clearly stoked to see Samir and Reda, he invited us in, introduced himself to me, ushered us through to the back of the house and asked if we want to stay for some dinner. We hung out in his backyard for a few hours, he cooked some chicken on the barbecue. It was a beautiful warm LA evening and we chatted about family, house renovation, parenthood, and business - Keith kept repeating this one phrase ‘focus on the metrics’, which afterward we took as our catchphrase for the rest of the trip. Keiths daughter played with a bubble machine and Reda shot some photos, I remember there were dozens of hummingbirds buzzing around the flowers on the back wall, it was a pretty blissful scene.

As the sun set, Reda left and shortly afterwards we got ready to leave, as we walked down the driveway Keith suddenly asked us - ‘do you remember Metropolitan?’, (Metropolitan was a skateboard wheel brand from the 90s that he'd ridden for), and being the ancient skate nerds that we are we both replied, 'yes, of course!’. He then opened the back of his car and pulled open two boxes, he explained that he’d bought the trademark and his new project was to start slowly building it up in to an apparel brand, by seeding product out for a few years, he then handed us some tees and sweatshirts.

One of the blessings of working in the skateboard industry is that you get given stuff, and when you’ve been in it for a long time it’s easy to become a little jaded, however… on this occasion it was so unexpected and the product was so good that we were both genuinely hyped. We then drove back to our hotel, drank a couple of beers and went to sleep, stoked.

I can’t speak for Samir, as that day now holds a different poignancy for him as it was the last time he saw his friend in person, but for me it was one of the most happy and memorable days of my skateboarding life, from a fun private session at the most famous skatepark in the world to dinner at Huf's house, for the whole day I literally felt like a kid at Christmas.

When we first heard talk of Nike SB releasing Dunks in tribute to Keith it made me think about that day again, and when it was revealed that the shoes were going to come in blind bags I thought about the excitement that that element brings to the people who are lucky enough to get their hands on them, once again - the excitement and anticipation of being a kid at Christmas.

With all of this in mind we thought we could use this opportunity to help bring that feeling to those who need it most… to the kids out there who don’t always get to feel that way, even at Christmas.

This is how we’re going to do it… to enter the raffle for the HUF Dunks you need to bring a toy donation in to the store and fill out an entry slip, on Monday the 12th we’ll draw the raffle and notify the winners. If you’re not chosen unfortunately we won’t be able to notify you but please take comfort in the knowledge that someone out there is going to be stoked on your donation.
The raffle is open until 5pm on Sunday, on Monday all donations will be taken by Home-Start Leeds, a charity which supports families with young children, and they will distribute them later in the week.

Please make sure that anything you bring in is good quality, new, complete and in its original packaging. We’ve made a start already, all the toys in the image below were between £6 & £12 and purchased from shops only a few minutes walk from Welcome. 
The shoes are £110 and the sizes we have available are: UK 3.5, 5, 5.5, 6, 6.5, 7, 7.5, 8, 8.5, 9, 9.5, 10, 10.5, 11 & 12.

You can enter as many times as you like. If you don’t want the shoes but would like to bring in a donation anyway then you are more than welcome, it will be gladly received.

Keith Forever.