Spencer Keeton Cunningham ROAD TO CUBA

I am traveling to Cuba during the month of May to paint walls as well as donate skateboards with a non-profit organization known as Amigo Skate Cuba, who's goal is the preservation of skateboarding in Cuba.

We are donating skateboards as well as tattoo equipment and art materials. These donations are given to a community of Cuban people who, when compared to the American standard, have almost no material possessions. If you are interested in donating please contact Spencerkeeton@gmail.com

Before heading to Cuba, I am leaving California to drive cross country. I will be driving through the south across America. My destination is Miami where we will take off on a plane to Cuba. Anyone interested in donating anything in any of the southern states in between California and Florida, please get in touch by email. I will be updating this page during the trip as much as I can with locations and cities I will be passing through along the way. On the way back from Cuba we will be taking donations for the next trip back there.

Boulder and Denver Colorado

On the road again.  Driving from Tennessee through Mississippi, Little Rock Arkansas, Oklahoma and Kansas, Colorado and Wyoming

Farewell Memphis. Farewell Mike. After leaving the hospital Mike and I took a quick trip to Altown so he could see the d.i.y. paradise.  Although it it was raining it was still worth the short drive.

 We got some fried catfish at a local spot called the Catfish Cabin.  They had a picture of Michael Jackson on the wall inside. The lady at the counter told me he ate there once.  That seemed like a good enough reason to eat there, so we did.  With catfish in our bellies we said our goodbyes and that was that.  The two would part ways.  

I’ve been in Memphis for 6 days in the hospital now.  Yesterday I decided to venture out into the outer regions of Memphis.  In the process of exploring the city I discovered a hidden d.i.y. mecca for skateboarding right next to the railroad tracks, deep in the heart of Memphis.

I met a man named Swampy and had a conversation with a fellow named “Jungle” about a northern chinese skatepark with bowls as far as the eye can see. Jungle went on to tell me about how he had smashed a bottle on a man’s face the night before, and that’s how he ended up with the light black eye he wore on the left side of his face. A friend named Garner gave me the run down on the how the spot known as Altown came to be and showed me his broken finger from the brawl the night before.

A group of kids from the neighborhood came by and Jungle gave them a lesson on how to ollie and do a kick turn on the quarterpipe. I ended up giving the kids a board I had and continued to tell them you need to put grip tape on it before you ride it.  Chad, another local of the spot, continued to mash around and front bluntslide this hump shaped feature as a couple other friends poured bags of concrete and water together to shape a new object to eventually slap their boards on.  

I examined the walls surrounding Altown, and after an ok from the locals I spent a few hours painting one of these cement canvases. I felt honored to leave a mark on such an epic hole in the ground.   

Night fell and we had a fire in the park. Swampy threw a couch onto the flames and the fire began to explode and shoot large pieces of concrete into the air.  Each explosion shot sparks into the black sky and the locals began to skate and howl in the fire light as the night went on.  I came in as a stranger into their memphis paradise and walked out a friend. I won’t forget this place anytime soon. -May 27th, 2014 Memphis, Tennessee

Westward  Bound. Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi & Tennessee.  On the road again with Mike. We drove from Florida through Georgia. Mike was stopped and questioned by a friendly Georgia cop, known only as Stone, for sipping a river soda on a slippery rock somewhere near Atlanta.  We found a lake in Alabama. The locals played a game of who could throw the knife at each other better.

Mike temporarily rented the kids raft as they played the knife game.  In Birmingham,  Alabama while exiting a Piggly Wiggly’s I dropped a large watermelon. It split open on the floor so we decided to eat it in the parking lot.  A local came up and advised us not to drink alcohol while consuming watermelon becuase “It’ll make ya sick boy.” 

So we drank nothing and ate remaining pieces our foreign melon in Mississippi. With memories of our friend George’s dad talking about Cuba in the 1930’s while loading his pistol and warning us about the next revolution at hand, we travelled on. The road was hot and so were we. 

We made it as far as Memphis when Mike noticed a problem with his health.  It had started since before we entered Cuba. We went to the hospital in Memphis and I am now awaiting to hear what’s going to happen next. Mike this is for you. Cheers brother.

Back on American soil from Cuba. After driving through Florida and stopping in Georgia in various locations we ended up  in Atlanta mid day.  The sun was hot and so was the concrete.  

Finding skate spots was an easy task. But our road fatigue set in early and we found ourselves passed out on a plot of grass before we knew what hit us.  Birmingham Alabama became our new home temporarily. The architecture spoke to our boards and our boards spoke back slapping the concrete and rolling around we found a nice bank and a pole jam right next to each other. If we had more time who knows what we would have found.  Leaving Alabama would be hard but we have to keep moving along. The road calls. 

Havana Cuba. photoos by: Chris Miller, Roberto Gomez, Rene Lecour, Spencer Keeton Cunningham

Photos by Spencer Keeton Cunningham Havana, Cuba 2014

Havana, Cuba Photos by Spencer Keeton Cunningham

Photos by Chris Miller

Photo Chris Miller Havana, Cuba

Photo Chris Miller Havana, Cuba

Havana, Cuba Photos by Spencer Keeton Cunningham

Rene Weighing the boards Photo: Chris Miller

Rene Weighing the boards Photo: Chris Miller