VIRGINIA BEACH — Kenny Jones, 28, designed a Virginia Beach-themed Nike SB Dunk Low shoe for a contest that ended March 22, 2021. Drew Boyd, with Tidewater Waves, designed the digital version.
Contestants were tasked with creating a unique design representing a city of their choice and posting it to Instagram. Jones chose Virginia Beach, where he was raised. The first round of the contest lasted until 3 a.m. Monday.
The top 10 contestants with the most Instagram likes will move to the next round, and the winner will have their sneaker made.
The color palette of the show pulls from many notable features in Virginia Beach and Hampton Roads. The navy blue along the shoes body represents the region’s heavy military culture including the Coast Guard and Navy.
Jones’ design is inspired by the Tidewater region (affectionately known by locals as "the 757"), hence the waves. The tan soles represent the Hampton Roads’ beaches, along with a trident emblem on one side for the Oceanfront’s King Neptune statue. Jones also included a clef symbol on the back of the sneaker to pay homage to the areas “music legends” such as Pharrell, Clipse, Timbaland, Missy Elliot and The Neptunes. “I’ve always had dreamt of having a shoe design, somehow, even though I’m just a guy in the military,” he said in a Virginia Pilot interview. Chesapeake resident Jones is approaching his sixth year in the Coast Guard.
Since his contest entry Jones received almost 30,000 likes on Instagram and over 190,000 likes on Twitter and has gained over 1,300 followers and counting on Instagram. To show his appreciation, he tries to respond to everyone who likes and shares his design. He aspires to get a sample of his design made and possibly catch the attention of celebrities such as Pharrell and Pusha T.