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Skates, trains and automobiles

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November Second Saturday on K Street

November’s Second Saturday attendance appeared to have decreased this month. Two hot spots however thrived and attracted visitors to the monthly Second Saturday Art Walk. Art galleries and other establishments on 20th Street as well as businesses on K Street attracted large crowds.

Downtown Sacramento’s K Street, in another effort to jump start the commercial area, opened for vehicle traffic on Saturday.

A stage was set up on 12th and K Streets to accommodate an opening ceremony, a car parade, and other entertainment to celebrate the event.

November Second Saturday on K Street

Classic cars paraded down K Street for the first time in over 42 years. Reminiscent of cruising down the boulevards of San Francisco or Los Angeles several dozen cruisers delighted onlookers who gathered for the event.

November Second Saturday on K Street

After the parade Butoh Dancers, courtesy of Rowena & Takashi, took the stage to showcase their hair and makeup talent.

November Second Saturday on K Street

Mariachi Latino, courtesy of Mayahuel, played their brand of music as patrons of the restaurant and guests enjoyed being serenaded.

November Second Saturday on K Street

The Smirkers, courtesy of Marilyn’s on K, also performed for fans and friends.

November Second Saturday on K Street

The Spazmatics were the last act to take the stage at 12th and K and they thoroughly delighted the audience. They started their performance singing “Cars” by Gary Numan. Their performances of 80s rock are very whimsical, energetic, popular choices for dancing, great to listen to and a lot of fun to watch.

The Spazmatics during November’s Second Saturday on K Street

The Spazmatics’ performance was a great official ending to the Cars on K event. As the 12th and K Street stage closed down, so did many of the venues and art galleries that participate in the monthly Second Saturday Art Walk events.

Just down the street on K and 11th a skateboard course was set up and several people skated. The course was provided to coincide with Omar Salazar’s Nike SB shoe launch celebration. The shoe launch included a red carpet event hosted by District 30.

As I stopped to watch kids skateboarding on the made up course a skateboard piece of art was being created by Eddie Stein.

Eddie Stein

Stein’s piece was created using a metal loop and skateboards were attached to it creating art. Stein used skateboards he’s collected over the years. A plaque attached to the artwork indicated that another local artist, Ianna Frisby, helped create the concept.

November’s Second Saturday on K Street

Mehrad Saidi had been at the skating course early in the day and was on hand to show me around, as we discussed the significance of K Street and skateboarding and how appropriate it was to be there to have an Omar Salazar shoe launch event.

Saidi said, “K Street was a popular spot for skaters back in the 80s” and as he said this, Stein – who was working on his art piece -interjected, saying “I skated it.”

Discussing skating in the 80s, Stein said, “I’m not really an expert but I know they changed K Street Mall and they built all these concrete structures which we called tape barriers because that’s what they looked like. There were also all these fountains and different embankments that we used when we came to skate at night.”

November’s Second Saturday on K Street

Stein indicated they skated at night because they did not want to get in trouble with the authorities. He indicated it was considered a skate friendly place in the sense that they could meet other skaters and was a place to hang out and learn from others.

As Stein continued to work on his structure, he noted that it was an untitled piece and was going to be using 23 skateboards to complete the work. He noted that a Hobie skateboard used in the display was from the time period we were discussing. Stein also noted that his piece had been exhibited at the California Auto Museum. Stein noted, “In fact it was the very first installation art piece ever allowed in the California Auto Museum.”

Steins completed work

People passing by stopped to look at the art piece and asked Stein questions. In the meantime skaters of various generations and ethnicities continued to skate the course. The love of skating was a common link.

Skating Casey Lindstrom’s ramps

District 30 was hosting the Salazar shoe launch later that evening and at their entrance Alma Campos of Forum Boutique had a table of her boutique designs on display. Joaquin Razo, the event planner for the Salazar event took me inside District 30 to reveal the set up for the evening’s red carpet event.

Luke Shawver of District 30 conveyed that several things were going to transpire during the evening in the club and surrounding establishments. He mentioned that DJ Chris Harnett would provide music for the evening and that drink specials were being offered at District 30, Pizza Rock and the Dive Bar.

November’s Second Saturday on K Street

District 30, along with other surrounding clubs, theaters and eateries on K Street look forward to increased traffic and hopefully increased business.

Legendary skateboarder Curtis Franklin was on hand to help the Salazar crew with the event. Franklin talked about skating in the 80s in Sacramento and said, “We used to come down to Sacramento and that’s how many of us met as kids.” Franklin noted that he skated with Stein saying, “He was a big guy back then and it’s still cool seeing him. Some of those boards are what I was doing when I was a kid.”

Omar Salazar fans at November’s Second Saturday on K Street

Franklin continues to skate and noted he has a skating set up in his back yard. I relayed that a neighbor of some friends had built a ramp in his backyard in Folsom and to my surprise Franklin knew who I was talking about.

Rekindling memories, Franklin stated with much enthusiasm, “Yeah, my buddy Roger, we all know each other.  His last name is actually Folsom. When I was a kid, Roger and my buddy Randy Katen and others hung out with each other. Some of the guys you lose track of but everyone just keeps skating, or they stop and start skating as their kids begin.”

When asked why he was at the event, Franklin noted that he was there to support Salazar. Franklin’s passion for skating is quite evident and he noted the skating community is very tight. Franklin said, “Omar has the ability to bring people together, he’s really connected with the kids and he’s a down to earth kid as well.”

In regards to the skateboarding community, Franklin explained that he was glad to see Salazar and others giving back to Sacramento. Franklin ended by saying, “It’s good that he’s giving back. If you don’t give back to this community you get kind of excommunicated. You have to know where you came from. I remember Omar skating with me when he was a little kid. He has a good family, good friends and a great foundation. He’s a positive and genuine kid.”

Curtis Franklin receiving recognition

Pablo Salazar and Saidi later presented Franklin with a display board that read, “Their Perseverance Paved the Way for This Generation’s Acceptance” and included the names of Sacramento skaters who continue to give back to the community. Names on the board included Matt Rodriguez, John Cardiel, Omar Salazar, Ricky Windsor, Brandon Biebel, Curtis Franklin, Stefan Janoski, Matt Palles and Mako Urabe.

Skaters enjoyed the ramps created by Casey Lindstrom. The Livermore native has lived in Sacramento for the past 14 years. When asked how long it took to build the ramps Lindstrom said, “It took about three days to put together the ramps and course. I build a lot of ramps for 28th and B (Skate Park).”

Skating Casey Lindstrom’s ramps

Lindstrom has been skating for over 25 years and also runs Casey’s Restoration, a construction business. He noted that lately he’s had a lot of free time and donates wood and other materials he may have during times of slow business. His commitment to skateboarding runs deep. “If I’m not working I’m doing something for the B,” Lindstrom said. Skaters keep him going and he explained, “Business has been slow and it’s a dog-eat-dog world. Skateboarding keeps me going and keeps people happy and that’s what it’s all about.”

District 30 celebrated the Cars on K Street after party that included the Nike SB shoe release and birthday party for Omar Salazar. Salazar celebrated with fans, friends and family.

The Salazar family

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