2009-11-27 / Community

Beach 87 Street Skate Share Fundraiser A Success

The Beach 87 Street skateshare kids who took part in the photo project. The Beach 87 Street skateshare kids who took part in the photo project. A few weeks ago, the Rockaway Waterfront Alliance hosted an exhibition of photography by local youth in order to raise money for a skate share on Beach 87 Street.

The funds raised that night covered the cost of the prints, exhibition books, boards and helmets for the 10 kids in the skateshare program. In the end the kids were all able to have a board of their own and can now take to the streets anytime.

"RWA wanted to say a special thanks to everyone who helped. Local residents jumped in to help offered including tshirts, beachwear and designer sunglasses. Steve Strathis, owner of Boarders, donated skateboards, helmets and tee shirts for the kids. Mark Parish, who skated professionally donated a bunch of wheels and decks for the kids to build their own boards. Artist Ricardo Cortes also donated multiple skate decks with his designs on them. The community really show - ed it's true colors and came out to support the kids", said Jeanne DuPont, Executive Director of Rockaway Wa - ter front Alliance.

Two of the girls looking over their work Two of the girls looking over their work Beth Perkins who led the project commented that at the start of the project one of the kids discounted how effective the project would be using disposable cameras and questioned the project would benefit the block. But at the end of the day of photographing, one of the students turned to her and said, "You know what. It doesn't matter if the photos turn out because today was like a field trip. It one of the best days I had this summer and was really fun."

"To me the event was bigger than the kids getting skateboards, it was a community that came together for a great cause and bringing together people from many different backgrounds and interests who would normally not hang out together to celebrate and have fun together", said Beth Perkins.

"The other thing about skateboarding is that I often see kids that skate hanging out outside the stores who are white kids from the west end and black kids from the east end and ironically none of that seems to matter in a neighborhood like this where there's been a long history of racial tension. Skateboarding is a medium that surpasses all of that for these kids".

The kids editing their photos The kids editing their photos Rockaway Waterfront Alliance and the kids on Beach 87 Street are grateful to everyone who supported the Beach 87 Street skateshare project and hope to encourage more outreach in the local community.

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