This is the start of what will be an ongoing series showcasing dads who take their job of having fun with their kids very seriously. It’s a dirty job, but somebody has to do it.
Billy Power’s boys got it going, then he pitched in, the neighbors joined up and the result was Snowzilla, rising 16 feet in his front yard in a neighborhood of Anchorage, Alaska. He had a corncob pipe and a carrot nose and two eyes made out of beer bottles.
“For two weeks, with the holiday spirit of a child, my Dad conducted the project and packed snow along with all the other kids and neighbor,” reported his daughter. This was in 2005, and it got bigger every year. Then the city slapped an injunction on building it again this year – it attracted too many people - and everybody was bummed until miraculously, Snowzilla appeared overnight and was 25 feet tall!
Powers is not taking credit; he insisted Snowzilla just somehow happened again, this time wearing a black stovepipe hat and scarf. “Have you seen him?” Powers asked when reached by telephone at his home, the sound of excited children in the background. “He’s handsome.”
Hamboard Skateboard Company
Pete Hamborg, a fireman with four little boys in 1995 - ages 1, 3, 5 and 7 and another on the way - wanted to find a fun alternative to strollers for shuttling his younger kids to the park. Hamborg cut a 7 foot board out of plywood and screwed some skateboard wheel assemblies into the deck.
The board served two purposes: transportation for the preschoolers and a training device to get the older boys started on surfing. As neighbors saw the family on the boards, some asked Hamborg to make boards for them, and they became a regular sight in the neighborhood.
A decade later a truck driver stopped and suggested he sell them, and the family Hamboard Skateboard Company was born. A fellow dad joined him, and the oldest of the five Hamborg boys, now 20-year-old Gus, and his friend’s son now work part-time on the business when they are not surfing.
Billy Power and Pete Hamborg remind us that dads are built for playing with our kids, and when we do, we all get a great deal out of it.
Do you have story of something you’ve done with your kids? We want to hear from you!