Emerica’s Wild in the Streets 2008 took New York completely by storm. The meeting spot was the legendary Brooklyn Banks, where thousands of Young Emericans gathered at 1:00 p.m. for the first session of the day. Andrew Reynolds hit up the quarterpipe while Ben Gilley and a few other dudes demolished the handrail and throngs of kids enjoyed the fat flat rail. And, surprisingly, nary a cop was in sight. After a half hour, flyers with directions were tossed out to the hungry mob as the bullhorn beckoned us to take flight. The massive crowd quickly developed a hive mentality then swarmed out into the streets.
The sight of thousands of skateboarders roaring through the city utterly commands the attention of everyone: pedestrians, restaurant patrons, families, midgets, city workers, joggers, smoggers, and of course, all of the cops, robbers and drivers who are powerless to stop it. Vehicle traffic simply remains at a standstill until this massive organism passes on by. The feeling of being a part of it all is so overwhelming and exhilarating! It puts the biggest smile on your face, and you never want it to end. There is absolutely nothing else like Emerica's Wild in the Streets.
The second session went down in Chinatown at LES Skatepark, a rad flatground spot with a few objects set up. An unbelievably massive crowd milled around for a spell, then went nuts when Reynolds boosted a huge frontside flip over the fun box. There were so many kids, that clusters of them broke off at random times to head over to the third spot, Tompkins Square Park, in the East Village.
That was the first time (that I know of) when a few cops showed up and tried to contain the situation. As thousands of skateboarders milled about inside the Square--which is a fenced-in area--and on all four of the surrounding streets, the cops asked everyone to proceed inside. But, the skaters would have none of that. Of course, they simply spilled out into the streets again and made their way en masse down to the Brooklyn Bridge, gateway to KCDC, the fourth and final stop of the day.
The street in front of KCDC was the scene of a massive block party, complete with bands, DJs, free pizza in the Emerica tent--the whole works. Since the crowd was so swollen, Emerica employed a lottery system to keep the product toss safe. Only stickers were thrown, and those who received one with GSD (Go Skateboarding Day) written on it received their free goods from the back of the truck. After all the tunes, pizza and gear was gone, we finally called it a day. All of us here at Emerica would like to thank 5boro, KCDC, New York City and every single one of you who joined the Emerica team to make Wild in the Streets 2008 such a huge success.