Ode to Joy of Surfing
Written by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel
When Beethoven composed his uplifting Ode to Joy for his 9th Symphony in 1824 he could have been writing about the joy of surfing
Jan and Dean definitely were when they recorded their megahit song Surf City.
What other sport has inspired so many to rhapsodize about it? Musicians, artists and writers – all have tried to convey its wonders. So, it’s fitting that surfing has its own special day, June 20, for rejoicing – International Surfing Day (ISD).
Started in 2005 by Surfing magazine and the Surfrider Foundation, ISD has become an annual event to celebrate this great sport and to give something back to the world’s oceans and beaches. Over the weekend there were 150-plus events in more than 30 countries.
On Saturday morning surfers and sun worshipers alike were out in full force at the Huntington Beach Pier to enjoy the day and pay homage to the summer solstice.
Surfrider’s Huntington/Seal Beach Chapter and Newport Beach Chapter had booths set up on the sand and hosted a jam-packed day of environmental education and entertainment activities, paddle-outs, beach cleanups, yoga, and more.
SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel couldn’t believe how much was going on.
KABC Eyewitness News and KTLA both came out to cover the story.
So did Sustainability News and Entertainment online reporter Diana Dehm.
HB’s Mayor Pro Tem Joe Shaw…
and Surfrider Global’s Kyle Lishok, Laura Lee and Alexa Ward were there, too.
Gina Maslach, who coordinated this year’s ISD event, told Surfwriter Girls there were “over 40 sponsors – an assortment of surf, stand-up paddle, canoe club, and yoga on the beach groups. Plus local businesses and surf industry leaders.”
Maslach emphasized, “I tried to get as many green, eco-friendly businesses and organizations on board as I could,” noting that the pants she was wearing came from event sponsor teeki and were “made from recycled plastic bottles.”
Surfrider members/sponsors Seth Matsonand Manuel Florence were at the booths of their businesses, Orange County Clothing Company…
and Brewbakers – with Seth showing his latest cool T-shirts and hats and Manuel giving out root beer.
Pedego’s electric bikes were on display.
M&M and Banzai surfing schools signed people up for lessons.
Aipa, Carrozza and 17th Street surfboards demoed their new boards.
Red Bull’s promotion crew was all over the beach giving out energy drinks…
and had a lounge tent set up that people could duck into to beat the heat.
The Hula Girls Hawaiian shave ice booth had long lines waiting for their colorful iced concoctions.
Noosa gave out samples of its Australian-style yoghurt…
and Tongo Coconut Water its“healthy alternative,” electrolyte-packed drink.
Rubio’s, Avocado Café, and Cabo Chips had samples and prizes, too.
Denise Islas of the Lokahi Outrigger Canoe Club told SurfWriter Girls that “we paddle six days a week,” joking that “on the other day I get to see my husband.”
It was great to see guitarist Tommy Clay back again, keeping the good vibrations going.
Surfrider H/SB Chairperson Tony Soriano was everywhere, setting up booths, greeting people, and making sure that Surfrider’s environmental message got out.
It was a big day for Tony – on Saturday night he was honored for his Surfrider volunteer work at the Angel Light Academy’s Coastal Above & Beyond Awards ceremony.
International Surfing Day was even more special this year because it coincided with HB’s 100 Years of Surfing festivities commemorating the day George Freeth became the first person to surf the HB Pier on June 21, 1914.
Tony Jones, who recently started The George Freeth Foundation to help inner city kids, set up a cardboard replica of Freeth near the pier and everyone had fun posing for photos.
SurfWriter Girls stopped by the pier to watch the When Men Were Men and Boards Were Wood surfing competition and listen to champion surfer Peter (PT) Townend announce the action.
This was a busy week for PT because he also curated (with Dave Reynolds) the International Surfing Museum’s Century of Stoke exhibit that just opened.
By the end of the day some 4,000 people came out to celebrate ISD-2014 and beach clean-up volunteers removed 188 lbs. of trash.
All in all, you couldn’t have asked for a better day to crank up your favorite Jan and Dean songs and Ride the Wild Surf.
To be continued – Stay tuned for more SurfWriter Girls HB Summer updates!
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