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Skaters Say "i'm lovin' it" in Eastbourne
Eastbourne Skate Festival 2004 is moving on leaps and bounds this year with more stunts and attractions than ever before, thanks to new sponsor McDonald’s Restaurants Ltd.
The largest Skate festival in the UK, organised by Eastbourne Borough Council and Eastbourne Sk8 School, will return on Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th July and it’s all free.

Last year 15,000 skaters took part and this year professional skater Jake Eley returns to launch the event with a stunt on Eastbourne’s seafront on Monday 5th April. Jake will be joined by a skateboarder and BMX rider, and will be putting on an extreme skating display, using ramps and jumping over McDonald’s litter bins, in a co-ordinated and timed display.

21 year old Jake, originally from Eastbourne, regularly competes at national and international level, and is also taking advantage of his visit to Eastbourne to film a new video with his sponsor K2.

McDonald’s will be joining in the fun too, Alison Purves, Senior Regional Communications Officer for McDonald’s said “’Eat Healthy. Be Active’ is an important message for McDonald’s. We are proud to support an event that has become part of Eastbourne’s heritage and also promotes an active lifetstyle.”

Open to all skaters, BMX riders and skateboarders of all ages, anyone can join in the fun at Eastbourne Skate Festival 2004. Novices can take advantage of the free teaching and try skating for the first time, or simply watch the experts at work. Keen skaters also get to show off their skills in the skate arena by joining in the many activities.

The packed programme includes a range of skating and skateboarding events in freestyle, fitness, artistic dance, speed slalom, hockey and ending each evening in a roller disco. Top professional skaters from Europe and the USA will also be demonstrating their skills from speed skating to break dancing on skates!

Skaters can look forward to the return of the Saturday Night Skate around Eastbourne. Based on the popular Night Skates in Paris and London’s Hyde Park, hundreds of skaters join the 6 mile Skate route around the town at dusk, complete with flashing lights on their boots and water stations courtesy of McDonald’s.

The extreme skate park will also be open both days with a professionally designed range of new ramps and grind rails alongside a live music stage, with local bands performing on Sunday.

The competitions make a welcome return including Limbo Dancing, High Jump, Long Jump and Tug of War – all on skates or skateboards, visitors can take part or watch the experts as they achieve unbelievable heights, including the Skate High Jump World record holder. The UK Speed Skating Association will also be providing demonstrations in both speed and slalom with the opportunity for visitors to have a go and beat the clock!

Those who enjoy team games can join a game of Basketball or Hockey on skates, with the help of top players throughout the weekend. Inline Ultimate Extreme Frisbee also makes a return, along with some more new sports tried for the very first time on skates!

Eastbourne Borough Council spokesman for Culture, Councillor Mike Thompson said “How do you burn off 20 calories per minute? Where can you get free skate tuition? Where do you go to see one of the best skating events in Great Britain – yes it can only be Eastbourne’s Skate 2004. Stunts, speed, Night Skate, top class performers – it’s an event not to be missed.“

For further information on the programme of activities visit www.eastbourneskate.co.uk or telephone the Tourist Information Centre on 01323 411400. For further information on Skate lessons in Eastbourne visit www.sk8school.co.uk.
05 April, 2004

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