Esther Kang

Skechers’ Pier-to-Pier Friendship Walk brings out thousands to Manhattan Beach [PHOTOS]

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Thousands of participants and families crossed the finish line at Skecher’s fourth annual Pier-to-Pier Friendship Walk at the Manhattan Beach Pier on Oct. 28 to raise awareness and funds for education in the South Bay.

Celebrity fitness guru Denise Austin, former Major League baseball player and Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorta and “Dancing with the Stars” co-host Brooke Burke hosted the Sunday morning event. Skechers’ president Michael Greenberg also spoke at the opening ceremony, which kicked off the 3.4-mile walk to the Hermosa Beach pier and back.

“It’s really beautiful to see the amount of not only community support but support in general from all these different types of people,” said Jill Jensen, manager of events & outreach at Skechers Foundation. “It keeps the program running.”

This year’s biggest donor was Nickelodeon, which arranged special appearances by SpongeBob, Dora as well as the four Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

Funds raised from the event’s registration and donations will support the Friendship Circle Foundation and the education foundations of Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach, Palos Verdes Peninsula and El Segundo.

Since the first walk in 2009, Skechers has raised $1.2 million to support children with special needs and education, according to a company press release.

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