THE newly revamped Kings Beach park area in Port Elizabeth will take centre stage on Heritage Day when its new skate park is launched.
The party to be held on Tuesday is part of the Mandela Bay Development Agency’s re-landscaping of the Kings Beach area and will start at 1pm.
Entertainment will include performances by musos Guns ’N Lazers, a break-dancing workshop for beginners, BMX, skating “free-running” demonstrations as well as giveaways.
Free-running is a combination of sport and art involving doing vaults, climbs and acrobatic stunts off objects in one’s path instead of just running around them.
Tuesday’s programme will also see the launch of the Madiba Young Bloodsz Skate Academy (MYBSA), aimed at underprivileged youngsters.
MYBSA programmes will run over weekends and holidays and will include art classes, skate lessons, competitions and a mentorship/sponsor-a-child programme.
MBDA spokesman Luvuyo Bangazi said more than 1 000 people were expected to turn up on Heritage Day.
He said the agency was assisting MYBSA by providing infrastructure support, a gazebo to work from and safety gear for children learning to skate. Visitors would also be encouraged to make use of the facility, especially during the school holidays, Bangazi said.
MYBSA founder-director Rejaun van der Riet started the academy with her partner, Jaco Steenkamp.
“The programme is about giving back. We want to teach privileged children that by giving something back, no matter how small, you can change someone’s life,” Van der Riet said.
Children will learn how to do flip tricks, “slides”, “grinds” and other skateboarding tricks, with guidelines to empower them socially and mentally.
The skate park has even featured in a five-minute documentary on skating filmed by the Adidas South Africa skate-boarding team.