“The Extreme Games is what would happen if Pearl Jam ran the Olympics.” – Mark Wolf, Rocky Mountain News, 1996
On this date in 1994, ESPN and ESPN2 announced the creation of the Extreme Games. Originally planned and presented as a week-long competition among the best extreme sports athletes in the world, the event was to be held each non-Olympic summer. Renamed X Games in 1996, it now is conducted yearly and has expanded to include both Winter and Summer competitions as part of the six-event Global X Games series.
The inaugural Extreme Games were held in and around Newport and Providence, R.I. in 1995. Among the sports featured were Bungee Jumping, Skysurfing, Street Luge, Barefoot Waterskiing, Rock Climbing and In-Line Skating.
Coincidentally, today also marks the retirement of X Games creator Ron Semiao after 28 years with ESPN. Semiao has seen his “baby” grow into full adulthood, all the while maintaining a spirit and curiosity that has kept the X Games evolving, growing and leading the way.
All of us at ESPN wish Ron the very best and thank him for all his “extreme efforts.”