A close friend of mine and local skateshop owner Andrew Po has been working with the city here to get a skateplaza built for nearly 8 years. The project is being built with zero tax-payer dollars and will be free for anyone to use. Through a small grant and lots of donations he’s helped the city secure enough money to break ground this past January and complete the first of three Phases for a late spring launch of part of the plaza. More money is needed to to continue phase II and III. This project has the full support of the mayor, city and residents, it just needs more funding.Pepsi is running a campaign now called the Refresh Project and they are giving out $250k grants each month to the cause that gets the most votes. Right now, the Skateplaza is in 5th spot and since March 1st has been as high as 3rd. I’m reaching out now for your support to help get this grant and complete the skateplaza.

Vote for the Bethlehem Skateplaza

Your assistance would cost you nothing except some of your time.  For those who aren’t familiar with the Pepsi Refresh Project it is Pepsi’s way of giving out the money they would have spent on Superbowl ads to projects that better the community.

For the Bethlehem Skateplaza it would mean opening the full version Phase 1 of the skateplaza by Summer 2010 as well as putting a large amount of funds into the bank for Phase 2.

Skateplaza Overview

Phase 1 would be approximately 3/4’s of the 43,000 sq foot project which would provide the local skateboarders- young and old, a safe, legal and quality place to pursue their passion.  As well as providing us as location to hold regional contests, skate lessons for the younger generations and a reason for touring pro teams to travel to Bethlehem while on the East Coast.

Skateplaza Overview

We are making lots of progress on the skateplaza and it will definitely opening this July but how much of it is still in question.  This Pepsi Refresh grant is our biggest and best way to raise a large amount of funding before our Grand Opening deadline to build as much as possible in Phase 1 to provide the best possible facility for the skateboarders here.

Skateplaza Overview

After the first day of voting our project got as high as 3rd place out of over a 1000 projects on the site.  We’ve slowly dropped to 7th place currently and I feel its mainly because our core group of voters forget they need to vote daily.  To supplement our core voters I am trying to reach out to the skate, BMX, “action sports,” music, streetwear, fashion and all industries that overlap with the skateboarding culture to help us expand our voter base.

We can still get into the 1st or 2nd spot by the end of the month to win a grant but we really need everyone’s dedication to vote daily and help spread the word about this great chance to win $250,000.

Here’s how anyone can help:

1) Visit www.RefreshEverything.com/BethlehemSkateplaza, register an e-mail account and once you are signed in, vote for our project. You can also vote using your Facebook login.

2) Please try and vote daily til the end of March.  We have til the end of the month to get into 1st or 2nd place to win the $250,000 grant.

3) Please spread the word to your friends, family, co-workers, school and so on to try and get other committed voters.

How a website/blogger can help:

1) Please use the information in this article to make your own post about what effort to build the skateplaza.

2) Re-post the graphics above and please link it up to www.RefreshEverything.com/BethlehemSkateplaza

How a company, organization or school can help:

1) Please spread this information to your co-workers

2) Your company or organization may have a websites that is platform to reach large amounts of people.  A quick posting about our cause can help us get some votes.  A short write up or interview could help get us even more.

Links to key skateplaza information & history:

A 3-D Fly Through of the Bethlehem Skateplaza. (Video)

A History of the Bethlehem Skateplaza:  From lobbying, groundbreaking day to pouring cement.

Quotes from Mayor John Callahan comments on the Bethlehem Skateplaza. (Video)

How the City Council and community helped save our project. (Video)

The Bethlehem Skateplaza Facebook Fan Page

Follow The Bethlehem Skateplaza on Twitter

I know there are a lot of causes right now that need people’s support and each is valid in their own right.  I appreciate any support you can give our cause.  Please contact me if I can answering any more questions.

Thank you so much.
Andrew Po

Andrew has been working towards getting a skateplaza built in his community for nearly a decade now and his hard work is paying off with the start of this project.  Because this skateplaza will be free to the public and is being built without any tax dollars, donations and grants are the only way to succeed.  Please vote daily for this, post the article to your Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and other social networking sites and email it to anyone and everyone who can help.