Michael Jones
Michael Jones

*Compton CA – Not since the Tony Hawk Foundation donated $15,000 to build the skate park at Compton’s historic Wilson Park have the words Compton and Skateboard been used in the same sentence… until now.

On September 14, 2013 the city of Compton will be holding its first annual skateboard competition hosted by the Ratchets Denim Company, Bridge to Skate and Downtown Dog Rescue. The event was formed when Kevon Gulley the Author of the critically acclaimed book ‘Just Like Compton’ was driving past the park and saw all the kids skateboarding.

When asked why he chose to put on the event Gulley said, “I remember when this park was dangerous, full of drugs, gang violence, and racism. Now look…look at all these kids Black and Brown playing together, laughing together, and skating together. How could I call myself a member of the community and not get involved?”

Jonathan Henderson and Alan Arellano
Jonathan Henderson and Alan Arellano

Gulley reportedly got on the phone immediately after and began to raise money for the event. News of the event entitled “We Sk8 II” (we skate too) soon reached the ears of big time skate shops like South Bay Skate, ET Surf, and Girl Skateboard which have all pledged to donate resources along with alumni from USC and Social Workers from the Department of Child and Family Services.

The event will feature competitions for all levels – Flow, Am, and Pro, will include prizes for Best Run, Best Trick, and Best Combination in addition to a shot at Sponsorship from the Ratchets Denim Company. Skaters from all over the state are expected to attend and compete for the title of Compton’s best skater.

There will also be a backpack and school supplies give-away, free haircuts and complimentary snacks for the children. With a new Mayor and a new state of mind, Compton seems to be getting on the right track.

Contact Gulley at: [email protected]

Photos by: Alicia Cass

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