willi winkels1The Craigleith Heritage Depot seeks the public’s contributions of memories and pictures of Willi Winkels and Wee Willi Winkels Inc. products to expand a new online exhibit about this legendary man and inventor with ties to the Blue Mountains area.

Wee Willi Winkels’ contributions to the skateboarding and snowboarding industries cannot be understated, and his innovations had a great impact on the sports. Many of the skateboards available in Canada from the mid 70s to the early 80s were made by Wee Willi Winkels Inc. in his Brampton, Ontario, factory. At that time brands like Alva, Toft Designs, Hosoi, and Sims were also contracting Willi to make some of their boards.willi winkels2

Willi and his friends tested early snowboard prototypes on the slopes of Blue Mountain, Mammoth Mountain in California, and beyond. Blue Mountain Resort has honoured Willi – later an instructor there - with a run in his namesake.

Public are invited to submit original digital content through an online submission form,, which accepts video recordings, sound recordings, word processed documents, images and more. Add memories of Willi Winkels and his skateboard team, of Willi riding his Motoboard in the GTA and later in the Blue Mountains/Collingwood area. Share personal stories of riding a Wee Willi Winkels skateboard, or riding Willi’s early snowboard designs on Blue Mountain.

“It has been exciting and humbling to hear memories of Willi from former pro skaters like Doug Teramoto and the first female snowboarder, Judy Winkels,” explains Allison Brown, Museum Assistant at Craigleith Heritage Depot, who has been working on the project. As of April, over 50 items were available to view online, and more content will become available as people upload memorabilia. View the exhibit at and search for “Willi Winkels.”

For questions regarding submissions or if you wish to share stories and memories in person, please contact the Craigleith Heritage Depot at: [email protected] / 519-599-3681 # 3.

source: media release, Craigleith Heritage Depot


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