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Aslan Depot premieres “Liminal,” a snowboarding movie

The film tells the story of professional snowboarder Jake Blauvelt and how he overcomes injury

A group of attendees watch the premiere of “Liminal” at Aslan Depot in Bellingham, Wash. on Jan. 18, 2024. The film premiere gathered the attention of local community members and fellow snowboarders. // Photo by Isabella Vandaveer

On Jan. 18, 2024, Aslan Depot hosted the first premiere of “Liminal,” a snowboarding film featuring Jake Blauvelt, sharing the journey of his injuries and how he persevered through recovery. 

On the second day of heavy snow in Bellingham, the premiere still managed to attract a full house. The event was a fundraiser, donating $1 of every Aslan beer sold to the Baker 542 Ride Special Olympics Team. The fundraiser included a raffle with gear from The North Face, Smith Optics and Ride. 

Directed by Liam Gallagher and Ian Post, “Liminal” follows the story of Blauvelt, a professional snowboarder dealing with injuries and transitioning from his past to the future with a new hip. About a year ago, stemming from a long-standing friendship, Blauvelt contacted Gallagher about a collaborative project in Washington.

“It was pretty interesting to watch his mindset change from the winter when he was in pain almost every day to getting the hip replacement and being a lifted soul,” Gallagher said. “He almost seems more excited than ever to get back on his board.”

While living in Vermont, Blauvelt owned a home in Maple Falls, Washington. Initially, the two thought the movie could be about Blauvelt and his life between Washington and Vermont. Later, when he got out to Mount Baker, it became obvious that the story would follow his injuries. 


Jake Blauvelt, the main character of the movie, on the set of “Liminal” on Jan. 19, 2023 at Mount Baker in Washington. Blauvelt treks through deep snow with his board in hand. // Photo courtesy of Liam Gallagher

The two-and-a-half-month filming process began in Mount Baker in January of 2023. Filming involved being at the mountain daily to capture snowboarding footage in various conditions. Gallagher shared that Blauvelt was dealing with significant pain during parts of the filming process, resulting in some days being cut short.

Gallagher said he intentionally avoided creating a sob story within the film. He emphasized that despite the challenges faced by Blauvelt, the intention was to acknowledge the physical toll of a pro snowboarder while showcasing his determination.

The snow conditions on the mountain posed an added challenge to the process of filming. 

“It can definitely be challenging to film. It’s super condition-dependent. It totally depends on every day, but it is driven mainly by weather, snow conditions and available lighting,” said Morgan Shields,  a cinematographer, photographer and editor for ski and snowboarding content based in Jackson, Wyoming.

Gallagher chose the name “Liminal” for the film because it symbolizes various transitional phases in Blauvelt's life. 

“The idea with the title ‘Liminal’ is the place in between. It is like the threshold between point A and point B, or the threshold of a door. [Blauvelt’s] story right now is that transition period for him,” Gallagher said.

The name represented multiple of these transitions: the period between living on the East and West Coast, Blauvelt's past to future career and his struggle with arthritis.

The premiere of “Liminal” at Aslan Depot brought a community of people to listen to Blauvelt's story while donating to a local organization.  The Baker 542 Ride Special Olympics team, based out of Bellingham, helps people with disabilities have the opportunity to ski and snowboard. Every year, the team seeks new volunteers to help spread the word about what they do and their stories. Volunteers can serve as coaches or race with members. 

“I love these events because I love telling people about it and answering questions from folks confused by our jackets and what our name means. It is a great place to do outreach,” said Gretchen Howard, Baker 542 Ride team member.

“Liminal” is available on The North Face's YouTube channel, released on Jan. 25.

Isabella Vandaveer

Isabella Vandaveer (she/her) is a city life reporter for The Front. She is a junior majoring in visual journalism and newly minoring in film. Outside the newsroom, you can find her skiing at Baker, drawing, or taking a long walk around her neighborhood. You can reach her at 

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