|Mother Nature took the side of the
streets for the first few days of the trip. Despite the rainy weather, the skaters managed
to roll off 135 miles on the first day out of San Francisco. The second day saw the group
well into Monterey County, another 106 miles of Highway 1 defeated.
Bobby Collins, a
spokesman for the rollers, reported that they were very well received in many of the small
towns along the way. The skaters were fed and put up for the night by generous residents
of the coastal communities they skated through. Other than a few burned-out bearings, sore
ankles and knees, the group encountered few difficulties.
The Hunger Project Team made it all the way to Santa Barbara by the end of the fourth
day. The following morning they were joined by a contingent of skaters from Southern
California for the final leg of the trip. A combined. party of 35 skaters wheeled out of
the peaceful beach city and headed south, All that remained was the last 100 miles of
With most of the trip behind them, the now-veteran road racers easily maintained their
13 mile-per-hour avmage speed. The entire group became widely scattered at one point but,
miraculously, they all converged just south of Oxnard without breaking stride. The Malibu
hills were the last really difficult part of the journey. After that, it was smooth
rolling into Venice. The last skater made it in with three hours of daylight left.
The Golden Gate Skate Patrol team's heroic efforts in this selfless endeavor were
supported very literally by equally generous and concerned members of the roller skating
industry. The skaters were outfitted by Skates on Haight (San Francisco), while Western
Skate Sales (Menlo Park) supplied their parts.
Equipment was provided by Kryptonic Wheels, Rector/STX Skatewear, Riedell Boots,
Independent Trucks and SKF Bearings. The skaters and the" Hunger Project both wish to
thank these companies for their much needed support and the GGSP was unanimous in their
approval of the quality and dependability of the products that carried them successfully
through a long, hard journey. You can imagine what enormous demands such a rigorous roll
would make on your gear!
Having conquered the Coast Highway, the Hunger Project rollers were joined by 250 more
skaters for a celebration the following day. The Brentwood 10k, a trifling distance by
comparison, drew some top names from the world of outdoor speed skating. It was a prelude
to the big one. The Second Annual Long Beach Marathon, a benefit for the Long Beach
Community Hospital, took place the following weekend and is the subject of a separate
article in this issue of ROLLERSKATING Magazine.
The summer months brought no relief to the streets as the pavement was pummeled at
every opportunity. A concentration of skate wheels massed just outside the hallowed halls
of the University of Southern California, where Herradura Tequila and Playboy Enterprises
co-sponsored a roller dash benefit for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
The streets of USC's fraternity row were turned into a roller drag strip for the event.
Two-member teams raced 100 yard relays in the single-elimination contest. Top finishers
were awarded over $1,000 in prizes. After the festivities were over, the .Kappa Alpha frat
hosted a party that will be remembered a lot longer than the lessons of History 1A.
Such indulgences were definitely not a part of the IADARP Roller-Thon held at LA Valley
College in Van Nuys. IADARP (Inter-Agency Task Force for Drug Abuse and Related Problems)
launched their event as an effort to raise money to combat Drug abuse in the San Fernando
and Santa Clarita Valleys.
KNBC-TV filmed a segment of it's Sunday show at the roll-a-thon where over 300 skaters
were entertained by actresses Shirley Jones and Susan Strasberg as well as comedian Marty
Ingels. A dazzling skating exhibition by Sal Chavez highlighted the proceedings. While the
streets around Valley College took a beating from all the skate wheels, at least with
IADARP's help they will be safe from drug-crazed youths of LA.
The Easter Seals Foundation was responsible for an assault on Century City's streets by
200 roller skaters. The 10k contest had skaters' wheeling through the ABC Entertainment
Center in West Los Angeles. The course was challenging and well laid-out. The streets did
their best to put up a good fight but ultimately it was Variflex's Terry Martin, who is
getting to be quite an outdoor racer, easily
outdistancing the field from start to finish first. Money raised by the event was
earmarked to provide special services and programs for the handicapped, with a week's
vacation or two in Hawaii as the grand prize for the top fund-raiser.
Wheels rolled for a different cause as over 3000 persons gathered for a "Save Our
Bay" rally at the Santa Monica Pier. A roller disco contest was staged by LA radio
station KHJ and the Save Our Bay Committee, a bipartisan organization headed by
Congressman Robert Dornan (R-Calif.) dedicated to stop oil exploration in Santa Monica