Emerica’s Wild in the Streets is not Go Skateboarding Day. It's a grassroots event created to empower YOUR community through skateboarding. A WitS event can be held any day, anywhere, and at anytime. Its YOUR event that’s designed to help organize the skate community in your area, and you should not feel that you need to wait until GSD to do it! At Emerica, EVERYDAY is go skateboarding day! Emerica's Wild in the Streets 2009 Main Event will be in Vancouver, Canada on June 21, 2009. But, if you can't make it, hold your own Wild in the Streets anytime! Just follow the guide below or download a PDF of the Media Kit.
How to Spark a Fire: Pick a Location, Time and Date
Choose an initial meeting point. To make things easy, it should be a spot that skaters know. If you pick a skate shop as the meeting place, make sure to include them in all of your planning. For Emerica's Wild in the Streets last year in New York, we met at the Brooklyn Banks, one of the most well-known skate spots in the city. This worked well, but be sure not to pick a place that is an immediate bust or that may cause complaints from local businesses. The time and date are important. Make sure it is clearly communicated. Being on time is critical, since staying in one place for too long may create problems with business owners or law enforcement.
Align with a Cause
There is power in numbers, so let your voices be heard. What is your cause? A skatepark in your town? A local charity? Make sure you let the local media know about the event: a Wild in the Streets event is a great way to raise awareness for a good cause in the local skateboard community.
Copy and distribute flyers, announce on local Web sites, do anything to get the word out! Try to make sure that every skater in the community is aware of the event before it happens. Be vague on the exact itinerary or route you will be following. You do not want to let people know beforehand where you will be going or you may find Johnny Law waiting for you when you arrive.
Create another batch of flyers to pass out on the day of the event. These flyers should detail the itinerary and routes you will be taking from spot to spot. A map is a nice touch. It can be hand drawn and have recognizable landmarks (i.e. street names, fast food restaurants, etc.)
Make sure the spots aren't too far apart. Remember that in addition to skateboarding to and from each spot, you'll be skating at each spot, so don't get carried away. Ideally, all your spots should be within a 2-3 mile or 4-5 km radius.
Try to give yourself an hour or less to skate at each spot and about a half-hour or less to skate to each spot. Then do the math and put the exact times you'll be at each spot on your "day of" flyer, beginning with the initial meeting time. That way, if someone gets sidetracked, they know they can meet up with the group again at spot X at 3:00 p.m., or whatever. Make sure the final meeting place and time is clear. In the event that something happens along the way that separates the group, if there is a known final meeting point, you can all regroup there and finish the day together.
Mix it Up
Plan fun stuff along the way. Anything from impromptu games of SKATE or Best Trick contests at each spot, to give-aways from sponsors, to finishing the day with a barbecue or block party. Be creative. You might plan to end at the local skatepark with a barbecue, or at the local shop with a video premiere. Have a party!
Be Safe and Have Fun!
On the day of the event, there needs to be at least one person who knows the plan, and who takes charge of the event. His / her responsibilities Include:
- Hand out the spot lists / flyers / maps.
- Instigate skating from spot to spot to keep things moving along on schedule.
- Manage product giveaways, Best Trick contests, games of SKATE, etc.
- Act as the point man in case of problems or injuries.
There may be younger kids around, so having at least one responsible person is a good thing to do. Under all circumstances, use your common sense and never instigate conflict or allow yourself to be dragged into confrontations of any sort. The goal of Emerica's Wild in the Streets is to uplift skateboarders and skateboarding within your local community. Don't let internal or external forces drag you down. You will only be falling into a trap and setting back the cause. Remain above it and remain free.
Even if only three skateboarders show up, you will have achieved an incredible feat. You've made three new friends in your local skateboard community. And if you keep it fun, there will surely be more at the next Wild in the Streets you organize, and more after that. Never doubt your own power! You are the spark that creates the fire!