THE #ESHOW
THE #ESHOW

Episode · 5 months ago

Exclusive Interview (Jake Adkins and Andy Walker) | Episode 84

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

On this week's episode of the #EShow we welcome Jake Adkins and Andy Walker onto the podcast. Adkins and Walker are a pair of forwards heading into their junior year at UMass Boston, but are also known as the 'Men in Blades'. Last summer, Adkins and Walker rollerbladed from Massachusetts to Michigan in an effort to raise money for the American Cancer Society. Fast forward a year later, and it's time for version #2 of the Men in Blades. Coming up on Saturday, August 21st, Adkins and Walker will be hosting a 10k event at Braintree High School, as they continue in their efforts to raise money for ACS.

Welcome to the e show with NeilRaven. With over one zero NCAA commitments, the ehl is the proven path tocollege. Turn it up and learn more about the college placement leader atthe division two and three levels. Welcome to the east show presented by thepenalty box foundation. The foundation's mission centers around their daily motto we take careof our own as they help out all of those within the hockey community who'veexperienced a catastrophic event. Learn more at penalty box foundation dot Org. What'sup? My name is Neil Raven. This episode number eighty four of thee show, and on this week's episode we welcome Jake Adkins and Andy Walkerto the PODCASTS. Atkins and Walker are a pair of forwards heading into theirjunior year at you mask Boston, but they're also known as the men andblades. Last summer, Atkins and Walker Roller bladed from Massachusetts to Michigan andan effort to raise money for the American Cancer Society. Fast forward a yearlater and it's time for version number two of the men and blades. Comingup on Saturday August twenty one, Atkins and Walker will be hosting a Kevent at braintree high school as they continue on their efforts to raise money forACS. I'm joined now by Jake Adkins and Andy Walker from you mass,Boston. How's it going, guys? Good. Thanks for having US andthanks for coming on the PODCAST. Guess we're recording this on August eleven,dropping the episode August twelve, a little over a week away from what you'recalling men and blades to version two. Who came up with the idea forthe for the men and blades? The name, though, the Jay,you take it. We kind of went back and forth on thinking of names. I think I ended up coming with the men up with the men andblades one. But Andy and I both came up with the fundraiser idea ingeneral and we had originally thought of blader boys as being one of the ideasand back quickly dissipated. And I think...

...men and blades it's stuck. Kindof ran with the men in black thing and I think it was kind ofclever to do the suits. And obviously we look like a bunch of clowns, but I think that's kind of the point, is to have something positiveand get people laughing. So and I think most people know what version onewas, but it was a skate for you guys from Massachusetts to Michigan.So you say that the men and blades idea is kind of both of youin general, but one of you had to have the idea first to skatethat far right. Yeah, so cind of stuff. Spot roller blades kindof out of the blue, hoping that weird play some roller hockey and turnthe stay in shape, and then coronahead and next thing we knew we're justblazing around the city and we kept going further and further every day and thatjust turned into us. One day I looked at Jake and just said,how much money would it take to go all the way to La and wekind of talked about it, talked about it, we looked into it abunch and then turned out we decided Michigan was a more suitable and realistic goaland they get took us probably a week or two to decide that American cancersociety would be our donations and then kind of just started planning from that andyou completed the skate this past this past year, from the Massachusetts to Michigan. For those that don't know, Jake is an alumni of the New Hampshireavalanche. Andy technically is not an alumni of the eastern hockey league, butit feels like you kind of are because there's been so much that you've donetogether. Obviously, being team Assy, you mask Boston. How quickly didyou guys just form the connection with each...

...other? Well, as soon asthe season ended last year pretty much everyone on the whole team left. Andyand I were good buddies the whole season and then as soon as everyone left, andy and I stayed during Covid we just stayed in Boston together and endedup moving in together and out of utter boardom you saw this roller blade acrossthe country. Maybe we should. Yeah, now, after you complete that trip. Obviously people kind of picked up the story as you were on thejourney in a lot more afterwards. When when did you guys have to kindof pinch your stuff and realize we just did something pretty special? It tooka while for it to sink in, honestly. Probably we took like amonth off from doing anything in general after and I guess just as soon aswe saw the big check come in for a American Cancer Society and we gaveit to Teresa Freeman, who's our representative for their it really just was likewow, I literally can't even believe this. But we got to keep it going. We gotta, we got to add onto that running total. WeAmit. We started brainstorming ideas and number one idea was never roller blade thatfar again. Okay, I'm going to ask. Yeah, we got thatout of the way. Yeah, I got that one out of the way. Well, what was the recovery process like? Like, I can't evenimagine how store you guys were. Yeah, I mean I know I stayed backin Michigan for two weeks I and didn't really do anything late in thea see, and then when I came back to Boston, I met upwith Jake. Obviously I moved everything back in and I think he was stillsleep in. One morning I was like I should do a body squat.When to do a body squat? Fell...

...down. I was like oof,maybe some so I think probably three weeks and I was doing body weight stuffagain. Okay, it during the journey. Will there ever moments when you saidto yourself, like we're not going to make it to Michigan? I'dsay almost almost every day we have. I mean it was like a hundredmiles a day, close to so we'd have we'd have our moments where we'relike all right, we got this, we're doing well, and then theyeah, the other side of the day we're like, oh my God,like I can't believe how hard this is. Yeah, at the end of theday, it was just all the people following us and in support ofus and we just kept seeing the donations go up. So we knew thatwe absolutely couldn't turn back. Yep. And then, you know, Isaid that the pincher selfline earlier, when you get nominated for the hockey commanitarianaward later on that year, was that in even bigger a moment for youguys? After the check I think, well, what the Siren passed by? Yeah, I think both of us. I know when we got accepted.We took about a week to apply for the Hockumanitarian and once we gotaccepted as one of the finalists, it was a huge moment. And nowthere's a few interviews in there and we're super excited just to be a partof being in that elite group of, you know, it's Terryan finalists.I know we were both pretty bummed out when we didn't receive the award,but I think that's just going to push us and strive us to do somethinglike this event and hopefully it takes off and helps out well. That's agreat transition then, because was it not receiving that award or was it themoney that you raise? What was the bigger motivator to come back a yearlater and do something, something else?...

Definitely the money. Okay, Iknow the award might look good on our resumes and obviously it would have beena feel good a ward, but I think seeing all that money we raisedwas unbelievable feeling, at least for me. I know Jake feels the same wayas well, and you guys immediately crossed off skating that far again.So how did you come up with the with the K idea that you've comeup with for this year? Well, we knew we wanted to do somethingwhere we could incorporate the public and I think that with all the stuff withcovid pretty much slowing down and everyone being more comfortable with going out and beingtogether, we thought it would be a great opportunity to have everyone congregate togetheragain, and we entitled it the back to school blade off on, becausethat's really what it is. It's yeah, we're all coming back to school intwo weeks after the event and it's just a chance for all of usto come and meet together do all the things. We make up for losttime, basically. and Are you rollerblading and this? So we talked aboutit. I think we're going to do the roller we got a lot ofstuff to coordinate on the day of and make sure it all goes swimmingly.Okay, we're going to roller blade the day before record of time and thenhave that time be like the men and blades club. So, okay,before that time, then you you made it into the club. Okay.So for the for the participants that have signed up so far, is itkind of a mixed bag of people that are skating, walking and running?Yeah, I would say so. I know some of the ACS crew beingthere, siblings or spouses. I believe they are walking. Okay, maybeeven skateboarding. A bunch of our friends...

...will be skating and I'm assuming allthe hockey teams that sign up will be skating, but there's also a tonof young kids and parents who I believe we'll be walking. was that acool part to see other colleges in the area, you know, as quicklyas they did sign up for this event? Yeah, I think that was awesome. Just even though they're rivals on the ice, we can all gettogether and support the same cause. I think that feels that feels incredible.And in terms of your college, how much says that the UMS Boston communitykind of got behind you guys, and when you're walking around campus nowadays,if people recognize you, I haven't walked around campus. Yeah, fair enough, but how is it the athletic department, with the stories that they posted andstuff, how they got behind behind what you guys have been doing?It's incredible. I think they've been a set's been a huge part of thiswhole journey. He's gotten most of the staff, if not all the staff, on board to do everything they could, especially on our first journey. Sothat was huge part all the stories and he continued this year with shootingour Promo video, which was awesome. So it's been incredible. The staffhas been seconds, not in support. And was there any conversation? Ihave to ask you, guys. Is there any conversation to get your coachout there skating with you guys. We should tell him to bring the blades. I know he's going to be. He's going to be an attendance.Okay, to him yesterday about it, so he'll be there for support,probably to speak on behalf of the school as well, but we do gotto get him a pair of blade so I'd love to see him flying around. Did he say you guys were crazy when you were skating as far asyou did last year? Oh, yeah,...

...he said we were nuts, butmost people would say, Oh, you guys are like that sounds crazy, you're crazy. But honestly, the first thing he said was, oh, like, I want to make sure you guys are safe, like justbe safe, like we're helmets. Like, yeah, it's when you go intoplaces, because it was right in the heart of covid and yeah,that was that really hit different, like it different because he was so caringand that way. Yeah, and you guys have like a team following you, which obviously you're on the spotlight being the two kids that are skating acrossacross the country there, but can you talk more about the team that waskind of following you on the journey? Yeah, the team was assembled itwas to my high school friends and then one of Jake's Colorado friends. Ibelieve they went to high school together and they were incredible. I know theykind of put their needs aside and I can't even imagine. I still tookmy hat to them driving ten miles an hour for ten days straight, butnever once complained. They knew, I mean they had to deal with usand we weren't always pleasant when we'd stop. So I definitely tip my hat tohim. It was without them I don't think we would have made itto worcester. Are they all involved again this year? Yeah, I think. I know. Sydney's coming and DNTE will be there. I believe Aaron'son a family trip but she's still trying and there's been teams like the ProvidenceBruins who have gotten on board with you guys this year. When it comesto organizations that are as big as that that are getting involved again, Idon't want to reuse this line, but get to kind of pinch yourself andsay, like we're actually making a pretty big name for ourselves. Yeah,I mean it feels it feels incredible to...

...have all the support that we doand I think that having Samboni out there is going to be really cool forthe kids. You be flying around. Yeah, all age groups welcome andI don't know, I just I do feel like I have to pitch myselfsometimes a lot. It is pretty overwhelming. And this event is coming up.For those keeping along at home, it's coming up on Saturday August twentyone at braintree high school. And can people sign up kind of right upuntil the event? Could they even walk up that day? Yeah, Ibelieve. I know we talked about it. Oh, sorry, we have meetingsnormally weekly or Bi weekly with acs and I think that was one ofthe big things we wanted, because I know even our friends haven't signed up, some of them, some of our teammates. So I think if youjust walk up you wanted to sign up, you're free to do so to braintreehigh school. If you wanted to sign up beforehand, I believe there'sa length. Maybe you can pop up or send out. Okay, andlike with this, when I'll post this as well, I'll make sure toinclude that donation link combined together so that you guys can say the number outallowed to make yourselves feel even more proud how much have you raised in twoyears behind this men in blades, name over, probably about thirty four thousand. Now, okay, that's pretty special. Yeah, and and people can donateright up until the event. Correct, Yep, and I believe what we'regoing to do is have andy and I sitting at at the stand signingpeople in and the man getting them tshirts and stuff. And if you ifyou're not currently signed up, you can pay cash or just sign up rightthere on the website. I can walk people through it. But okay,you can sign up right until the day...

...of the event. It starts atnine am and I believe we're going to be doing check in from Ezero tonine. So okay, cool. Well, I've been making my donation after repostthis as well. And then and then for me personally, guys,the next time I'll see you is our exhibition game, which is on SaturdayOctober twenty three. We get to found the bring this back temhl versus youmask Boston. So we'll see you guys then. Awesome. So much.Thank you. Thanks for listening to the e show. Learn more at EasternHockey League Dot Org and follow us on Facebook, twitter, instagram and Youtube. Also be sure to subscribe and get notified when next week's PODCAST is released.

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