10:20am | A car show and skate jam will be held this Saturday at the Michael K. Green Skate Park on 14th and Pacific Avenue from 12:00-4:00pm, featuring new Fire Department Chief Alan Patalano and Formula Drift co-founder Jim Liaw to bring several Long Beach organizations together and provide a positive opportunity for the neighborhood to celebrate.
The event is hosted by the Department of Parks, Recreation & Marine and will feature Formula Drift cars, custom cars, fire trucks, hot dogs cooked by the Fire Department and free giveaways and prizes. The surrounding streets will be shut down to create a true neighborhood block party atmosphere.
It's the second such event at the park this summer. In June, Police Chief Jim McDonnell spoke to skaters and members of the local community about public safety, and they welcomed him to the newly-renovated skate park that bears the name of a young local skater who was bound for stardom before being struck down by a stray bullet several years ago. A documentary was born from the death of Michael K. Green, aka Blacc Mike, and it debuted at the Art Theatre in May.
"The purpose is to keep the kids involved and keep reminding them the skate park is special," said Mike Donelon, former Long Beach City Councilmember and unofficial mentor to the local skaters.
"It's their park and they take care of it, a pride of ownership type thing. Our message is stay in school and out of gangs. Most importantly this is a fun, laid back event for the neighborhood."
Local organizations and companies that have signed on in support include the Long Beach Rescue Mission, Long Beach SKATE, Etnies and the Tony Hawk Foundation.