Venice Skate Protest

Salt Rags and Skate Advocate Heidi Lemmon and pro photographer Chris Hooten were on the scene at the June 14th, 2020 Venice Skate Protest.  

Here is a message from Heidi Lemmon.

Venice got together to support the Black Lives Matter protest on Sunday, June 14, with an event starting at Venice High School and then skating to the Venice skatepark. 

I arrived at 8:30 am, and Girl is NOT a 4 Letter Word and Skateboard Hall of Famer Pro Cindy Whitehead was already there setting up with photographer Ian Logan, speakers Freddie De Sota and David Hobley, filmer John “Fuzz” Escobar and Channel 7 news. By 9 am most of the 100 plus protesters were there, many with children in tow and hand painted signs.

Cindy Whitehead was mc for the event and let everyone know it was “our” event as in every person there had an equal share in it. No brands, no marketing, just a message of unity and support for BLM.

Speakers included:

Freddie De Soto a skateboarding legend from the 70s and one awesome guy. His career has spanned decades and he is one of the nicest skaters you will ever meet. He spoke of his experiences and how proud his father would be to see this change happening.

David Hobley a transplant from Chicago and ER Dr. who skates Venice every day. He talked about people he lost and hope for the future.

Divinity was our only lady speaker and spoke about police brutality, her experiences and in the end called out the names; George  Floyd, Breonna Taylor Trayvon Martin, Sandra Bland, Tamir Rice, Ahmad Arbery, Freddie Gray, Atatiana Jefferson, Michael Brown. The crowd called out “I love you” after every name.

And last but not least our own local surfer and skateboarder Eric “TUMA’ Britton. Eric is all about the kids and coaching thru his company Roll Model Skateboarding. He has his eye on the future. His young son is also a skater and he was very passionate about the importance of this movement and the future of our kids.

At 9:45 am the skaters pushed off carrying signs and skater Joe Contreras skated with an American Flag flying freely. Cars honked their support and hollered words of encouragement. The 2.5 mile skate on rough road was hard and a lot of burning legs but everyone made it including our youngest skater, 4 year old Roman, skating with mom & dad.  

Some of the younger ones had to drive there and 2 year old Nila and Niaje met everyone at the park.

To sum it up.. an AWESOME DAY for a cause that must have our support! It was our only skateboard event for the year and to skate, show up and bike and be part of something this important meant a lot to all of us.

Keep the momentum going.

View photos below by Chris Hooten

Shon Lomax

Speaker: Freddie De Sota being interviewed by Channel 7

Speaker: Eric “TUMA’ Britton

Speaker: Skateboard Hall of Famer Pro Cindy Whitehead

Speaker: David Hobley

Speaker: Divinity

Skater Joe Contreras

4 year old skater Roman with mom & dad John & Tai Shin

Skater girl Quinne Daniels

Pro skate legend Lonny Hiramoto

Kimi Kallman

Fuzz Escobar, Jeffrey “Freshboybleed” Harris, Heidi Lemmon, and  Willy Harris

Skater Meklo Rivera and protestor Terrance Henry

Skater Peck and Downhill Rob

Soraya Zain, Downhill Rob, and  Jay McGowan left coast longboarding

Joe, Andy Bialk, and friend

Thank you again Heidi Lemmon and Chris Hooten for sharing your  June 14, 2020 Venice Skate Protest experience.

Check Los Angeleo Magazine for Cindy Whitehead‘s written coverage and Ian Logan‘s photos.

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