Under One Roof: Monster Energy Ventures into Sneaker Con LA with Two Js & Guapdad 4000
Sneakers serve as a means for enthusiasts to showcase their interests, values, and individual flair to the world. Sneakers are never just regular shoes. They have transformed into a global phenomenon, and at the center of it all is Sneaker Con—an internationally acclaimed event that brings the sneaker community together under one roof.
In the ever-changing world of fashion, sneakers have carved out a unique niche, going beyond their basic utility to become iconic symbols of style and self-expression. Each pair of sneakers tells a story, creates a connection to a specific moment, or represents a personal style preference. Sneakers now serve as a means for enthusiasts to showcase their interests, values, and individual flair to the world. Sneakers are never just regular shoes. They have transformed into a global phenomenon, and at the center of it all is Sneaker Con—an internationally acclaimed event that brings the sneaker community together under one roof.
If you've never experienced Sneaker Con, it's like stepping into a sneaker shopper's paradise. Whether you're obsessed with collecting sneakers, a seasoned reseller, or simply an admirer of footwear fashion, Sneaker Con is the ultimate haven for sneakerheads. With a huge space for merchants and attendees, the event offers an unmatched environment to buy, sell, and trade the most sought-after sneakers in the game. Founded by Alen Vinogradov and Barris Vinogradov in 2009, Sneaker Con initially started as a small gathering of local sneakerheads in New York City. However, it quickly gained traction and grew into a globally recognized event. Today, Sneaker Con takes place in numerous cities across the United States, including Los Angeles, Chicago, and Washington D.C., as well as international locations like London, Tokyo, and Sydney.
As part of our Heat Check content series, which delves into the vibrant sneaker culture and fashion scene, Monster Energy had the opportunity to venture into the event. We tagged alongside Jaysee Lopez, the renowned sneaker icon famously known as Two Js and the visionary behind Urban Necessities. He led our sponsored hip-hop artist, Guapdad 4000, through a maze of vendors where they peeked an array of the rarest and most sought-after sneakers on the planet.
During their time at Sneaker Con, Two Js introduced Guapdad to DJ Willingham, the host of the YouTube series DNA Show. DJ Willingham, a true sneakerhead who has been collecting sneakers for 15 years, unveiled his inspiring collection at the event. His impressive booth included player exclusives and was estimated to be worth over $100,000. The duo also had the chance to chat with Yovani Barrera, the co-owner of the retail store Bring it Back, as well as the established sneaker influencer and co-owner of Private Selection, Scotty Norris.
Norris revealed the upcoming collaboration between Powerpuff Girls x Nike SB Dunk Low, set to hit shelves later this year. In celebration of the charming superheroes, Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup, the collaboration boasts three distinct colorways. Each style is carefully designed with high-quality materials that present a truly special and eye-catching aesthetic. However, it is the attention to detail on the heels, where the characters' big eyes are prominently displayed, that sets these sneakers apart.
Many sneaker enthusiasts find their love for sneakers rooted in a strong sense of nostalgia, especially when it comes to iconic releases from their childhood, like the first Air Jordan shoe or significant moments in cultural history. Sneakers have a unique way of stirring up sentimental memories, and this partnership with Cartoon Network is a playful reminder of that.
Aside from the convention’s vast array of kicks, Sneaker Con fosters a sense of community and camaraderie among sneaker enthusiasts. Attendees have the room to meet like-minded individuals, build connections, and form lasting friendships centered around their shared love for sneakers.
“This is what makes sneakers fun,” Willingham said. “Like, yeah, you can go buy the shoes that everyone else got, but when you get to find the people and make the relationships, that’s what makes it fun.”