Girl Power: Chica De Mayo Rocks Skatepark

Girl Power: Chica De Mayo Rocks Skatepark

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A large group of girls and young women showed up for Chica De Mayo at the Ocean City Skatepark. (Photos courtesy of Willie Fannon)

By Tim Kelly

Pastel colors, glitter and high-pitched voices don’t usually dominate the Ocean City Skatepark. That’s exactly what happened on Saturday, though, during the hugely successful Chica De Mayo event.

The predominantly male sport of skateboarding took a pause as the girls-only skating party took over the park at 550 Asbury Avenue.

Originally scheduled to coincide with Cinco de Mayo on Friday, May 5, the rainy spring weather would not let it happen. Saturday’s rain date had perfect weather, and the girls took full advantage.

“I wanted to have a chance for girls to get together and have skating, no matter their experience or ability,” said 12-year-old Zoe Herishen, the event organizer, in announcing the festivities recently. “I wanted to bring longboard riders together with skatepark skaters.”

Winners in the 9 and under age group show off their prizes at Chica De Mayo.

After hosting two successful Chica De Mayos in Brooklyn, N.Y., and one in Asbury Park, the Wildwood Crest resident brought the event to Ocean City.

“Zoe (Herishen) did a great job putting on such a successful event,” said Willie Fannon, a local skater, surfer and event planner. “We even had people walking by who came in and tried skateboarding for the first time.”

The event capped a big week at the park. On Wednesday, “Night Skate 2” brought a large crowd for the opportunity to listen to music, enjoy snacks and beverages and skate under the stars, thanks to floodlights provided by the Ocean City Fire Department.

Saturday, however, belonged to the skater girls, who had the full run of the facility from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. Girls entering the park for the free event enjoyed a glitter bar, healthy snacks donated by Bungalow Bowls and art supplies donated by Peace of Wood. The art supplies allowed the girls to create personalized skateboard decks.

Other local sponsors were Heritage Surf Shop, Bowfish Kids and Deadend Bakehouse.

“It was an impressive gathering and really showed how skating has become a sport for both males and females,” said Fannon. “It was great to see the community come together and show such support.”

Chica De Mayo founder Zoe Herishen, 12, gets some air Saturday at the Ocean City Skatepark.