A Skateboarding Ministry for UUSM Youth


Children and Youth RE has exciting news to share. Our DRE, Cleo Anderson, has secured a grant from UUA to provide an innovative skateboard ministry.

Last year, the pandemic completely restricted the usual in-person events and occasions we cherish that bring our community together. C&Y RE has worked hard to offer our children and families creative and educational alternatives through Zoom and other platforms.

An exciting new Skateboard Project will bring together the long history of our area (Venice Beach and Santa Monica) as the birthplace of extreme skateboarding and our beliefs as Unitarian Universalists. Still known as “Dogtown” to locals, the West LA beach area become the focal point of West Coast Skateboard Culture beginning in the 1970s. “In this place”, it has been said, “a ragtag group of young surfers overcame all odds and rose to stardom, changing skateboarding culture forever.” We are proud of this history and see it as a pathway for opening discussion with our youth.

Using skateboarding as our “vehicle”, we will learn about how the cultures of skateboarding and religion compare, contrast, and intersect. We will also discuss how to discover and express individuality, and how to “make a culture your own” through the creation of actual skateboards and the choosing of the decoration of the deck or board.

We expect that this project will stimulate discussion with our youth about how people grow and change and how that can be reflected in both the decoration of our skateboards and our religious practice as Unitarian Universalists.

More details will be coming soon.

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