OCEAN CITY — David Taylor and his son David Taylor Jr. skateboard about three times a week at the city's skate park.

But Saturday afternoon was a little different for the Linwood residents.

The father-son duo competed in the third annual Chip Miller Amyloidosis Foundation Skate Fest at the Asbury Avenue park.

The elder Taylor, 54, started skating in the 1970s, while the younger Taylor, 24, has been skating for 10 years.

"The atmosphere is great," David Taylor said. "There is younger and older people (skating), and the parents are out watching. It's a great sport."

The event, which was '80s themed, featured two tournaments, the Bowl Jam and the Street Skate Jam. Each competition had four age divisions, ranging from 10-year-olds to adults. The Skate Fest also had a separate girls division.

Awards included best costume, highest ollie, best trick and biggest wipeout. The prizes, which were donated by sponsor Sector 9, included boards, wheels, trucks, T-shirts and hats.

"It's a great cause and a good element of skateboarding," David Taylor said. "This is the new way for parents and their kids to skateboard together."

The Chip Miller Foundation, which held its 16th annual Surf Fest last weekend at the Seventh Street beach, was created in memory of Miller, who died from amyloidosis in 2004.

Amyloidosis is a rare, fatal condition in which an abnormal protein, called amyloid, builds up in tissues and organs, typically the heart, liver and kidneys. The disease causes those organs to malfunction and fail.

Lance Miller, Chip's son and president of the foundation, grew up in Ocean City. Lance, who always skated and surfed with his father, started the event by reminding the younger kids “to hug your parents tight each day because you never know about tomorrow."

"My father was my best friend," Lance Miller said. "We really wanted to celebrate his life, but at the same time spread the word about this terrible disease that took his life."

Damon Organt, 16, was there supporting his younger brother, Dekker, 12. Damon, who stays at a beach house with his family in Cape May during the summer, said Dekker has been skating for five years.

"This is his second year doing this," said Damon, 16, of Philadelphia. "He wants to come out and have fun. There's a lot of great skaters here. It's fun to watch."

David Barker, 10, also competed in the event for the second straight summer.

"This is a great event they do for the kids to come out and enjoy skateboarding,' said David's father, Jonathan. "It's nice seeing some kids from (last year) getting better. They all get along well and encourage each other."

The skate park, which is open to the public, attracted other skaters and spectators to the event Saturday. 

Dana and Paul Koshgerian, of Lexington, Kentucky, own a summer home in Ocean City. Their grandson, Kaden Flynn, 9, of La Jolla, California, was visiting and initially came to skate.  

"I think it's a very good cause," Dana Koshgerian said. "I think it's a wonderful idea, and the kids that are entering are really, really good skaters. "It's fun to watch."

"It brings together the community, and that's one of the great things about it," Lance Miller said. "We are always doing various events trying to raise awareness and funds for the cause.

"I love this."

​Contact: 609-272-7210

PMulranen@pressofac.com 

Twitter @ACPressMulranen

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