The Venice Beach Skate Dance Association will host a ribbon cutting ceremony to unveil its newly resurfaced Skate Dance Plaza on July 14th at 2:00 p.m. and will welcome skaters representing four decades of the iconic roller dance culture. Also in attendance will be Venice Boardwalk business owners, members of the Los Angeles Fire Department and Department of Parks and Recreation, and Councilmember Bonin’s office.
The Venice Beach Skate Dance Association, along with prominent members of the Venice Beach community will join professional and amateur roller skate dancers in an official ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the re-opening of the Venice Beach Skate Dance Plaza in celebration of the completion of a major resurfacing project. The ceremony will unveil the newly paved Venice Beach Skate Dance Plaza on July 14th, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. and will be followed by a dedicated weekend of events scheduled for the weekend of August 9th – 11th. To celebrate the milestone of the approaching twenty-year anniversary of the Skate Dance Plaza, the first ever evening Venice Beach Roller Disco event will be hosted on Saturday, August 10th in the Skate Dance Plaza. Roller skaters from around the world, representing four decades of dedication to the art form, will be visiting to attend the weekend of events.
Background: The Venice Beach Skate Dance Plaza is home to the most globally recognized skate dance community in the world. The iconic outdoor rollerskating phenomenon known as “roller dancing” was born in in the mid 70’s with the advent of the polyurethane skate wheel and found its’ most famous home steps away from the Venice Beach Boardwalk, amidst the gritty urban beach landscape that served as a popular Los Angeles recreational playground. Every weekend people of all ages, races, religions, and socio-economic backgrounds have gathered in Venice Beach to admire and share in the free skate lessons and solo and group skate performances that have been immortalized in movies, television and music videos. Aside from its influence on popular culture, the Venice Beach Skate Dance Community has preserved its rich artistic expression in a safe, free, public recreational activity that has served the public and participant alike.
The City of Los Angeles recognized the immense cultural contribution of the Venice Beach skate dance community in 2000 when City Council officially designated an area of the newly designed Venice Beach park as the Skate Dance Plaza — allowing this unique community its rightful place alongside other iconic Venice Beach recreational attractions (Muscle Beach, Venice Basketball Courts, Venice Beach Skatepark). But over the past 19 years, the paved surface of the Skate Dance Plaza has suffered from exposure to the elements, vandalism, and found itself in desperate need of restoration.
With that goal in mind, in 2016 an independent fundraising effort was begun by the members of the Venice Beach Skate Dance Association to raise the necessary $60,000 to resurface the Skate Dance Plaza. Over three long years, the community succeeded in funding the project thanks to the generosity from private donors of the skate dance community and assisted by the attention the release of the documentary “Roller Dreams” drew to the Skate Plaza’s civic importance and struggles to survive.