June 3, 2020 #1 Local News, Forum, Information and Event Source for Venice Beach, California.

Dogtown Relic Rip City Skates to be Demolished

Santa Monica skate shop looking for new location

By Sam Catanzaro

Rip City Skates opened its doors in 1978 in Santa Monica at the dawn of the modern skateboarding era. Now Los Angeles’ oldest continuously operated skate shop plans on relocating as the building’s owner is looking to demolish the Santa Monica Boulevard property.

Bill Poncher, who has co-owned Rip City since day one with his cousin Jim McDowell, says that their landlord plans on demolishing the building and that the store has between six and eight months to find a new location. According to Poncher, Rip City hopes to find a new storefront in the Santa Monica-Westside area.

Chage.org petition with over 5,000 signatures looks to save the shop by getting the City of Santa Monica to designate the property as a historical landmark.

“This store is more than just a skate shop, Jim [McDowell] and Bill [Poncher] have created an environment that has fostered the skate community of Santa Monica for over 40 years,”reads the petition. “It’s upsetting to our community that the city of Santa Monica would overlook it’s cultural relevance to the city itself. Its significance in skateboard history is well known and respected worldwide.”

Poncher, while touched by the community support, says that he is wary about getting too worked-up by the situation out of concern of antagonizing their landlord and forcing a rent increase.

“The community outpouring, I am so touched by it, but on the same hand I can’t get too emotional about it,” Poncher said. “That’s just how it is, so you just embrace it, I guess, and you move on.”

Disclosure: the author of this article has purchased two skateboards and various gear over the years from Rip City Skates.

Related Posts

Suspect at Large Who Shot at Police in Venice

June 2, 2020

June 2, 2020 1

Officer shot at on May 31 on Lincoln Boulevard By Sam Catanzaro Los Angeles Police are searching for a vehicle...

Ben Affleck Among Peaceful Protestors in Venice

June 2, 2020

June 2, 2020

Demonstrators protest police killing of George Floyd By Sam Catanzaro Thousands of peaceful demonstrators, including Ben Affleck, protested in Venice...

National Guard Arrives in Venice

June 2, 2020

June 2, 2020 1

Online rift between event organizer and local blog By Sam Catanzaro The National Guard is currently stationed in Venice to...

George Floyd Protesters Come to Venice

May 28, 2020

May 28, 2020 1

Demonstrators march from Santa Monica to Venice Thursday afternoon By Sam Catanzaro “Black lives matter.” “White silence is white violence.”...

Video: Venice Skatepark Taken Back by Skaters

May 28, 2020

May 28, 2020 1

Defying officials, Venice Skate Park skaters recently took matters into their own hands after the City of Los Angeles filled...

Video: Expanding Outdoor Dining?

May 27, 2020

May 27, 2020

Local restaurants may soon be able to expand operations into parking lots and the sidewalk. Learn more in this video...

VNC Rejects Lincoln Apartments Proposal

May 26, 2020

May 26, 2020 1

Venice Community Housing project rejected unanimously By Toi Creel A 40-unit supportive housing project continues to be met with pushback...

County Cancels Junior Lifeguard Program

May 26, 2020

May 26, 2020 1

COVID-19 health concerns put program on hold for 2020 By Toi Creel The Los Angeles County Fire Department Junior Lifeguard...

Body Found on Venice Boardwalk

May 25, 2020

May 25, 2020 1

Man found deceased near paddle tennis courts Sunday By Sam Catanzaro A man was found dead on the Venice Beach...

Venice Beach Bike Path Reopens

May 21, 2020

May 21, 2020 1

Supervisors Janice Hahn, Sheila Kuehl announce opening in Facebook posts By Sam Catanzaro The beach bike path is now reopened,...

Bonin Proposes Housing Plan for Penmar Encampment

May 21, 2020

May 21, 2020 1

Councilmember calls encampment “a perfect example of the city’s failed policies” By Sam Catanzaro Councilmember Mike Bonin has submitted a...

When Will Los Angeles Fully Reopen?

May 19, 2020

May 19, 2020 1

County: 3/4 of unemployment claims are from those making less than $50,000 By Sam Catanzaro Los Angeles County officials are...

Video: Westside MLB Brothers Give Back

May 18, 2020

May 18, 2020 2

Two Westside brothers, both professional baseball players, are giving back to local first responders COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more in this...