A surf contest is all about the ideal location and good waves. The majestic views, friends and good times just happen to be the added bonus that comes along with being a part of the surfing community.
There are many components to putting together a surf contest. You need competitors of all ages, typically coming from near and far to participate in a sport that they love.
Judges working hard to make sure that a wave or maneuver isn’t overlooked.
Tabulators checking and double checking the judges scores.
As well as having the scores up in a timely fashion for everybody to see.
Wonderful people behind the scenes doing their best to keep us entertained all weekend. Not to mention keeping the cogs in the wheels, that is a surf contest running smoothly.
No matter how early or late they must be there to ensure that the contest goes off without a hitch.
Talented artisans donating gorgeous hand crafted prizes.
Along with generous sponsors who donate their products, money and time.
Lighthearted silliness on the beach to keep us all going.
Photographers hoping to catch a dream action shot.
Oh and surfing of course! All of the above makes for a perfect surf contest weekend.
You guys might know this already but in case you didn’t here is a little known fact amongst all of us, surfers who compete do NOT play around.
They are always trying to to out walk…
And grind one another. It is at the top of their list during a surf contest, or so you would think.
It’s not all shredding and aerials, in fact there is more to a surf contest than most would assume. Surf contests can be a true representation of community at it’s best. My favorite definition of community is the ecclesiastical one Community: a group of men or women leading a common life according to a rule. As a rule surfers are all about family, support, giving and charity.
At a surf contest you will see moms being supportive with their daughters, listening as they discuss how they feel about their performance.
Fathers helping sons down the beach during a heat when the current is swift and strong.
Friends cooing over a cute baby and giving the new parents some moments to enjoy the ocean without worry.
Families sharing the simplicity of a day off together basking in the sun.
Friends showing each other how much they care…with all of their mischievous hearts.
Never afraid to express camaraderie over another person’s victory…
Even in defeat.
Surfers may compete fiercely against one another out in the water but where it counts, they are an extremely close-knit family, especially when we lose one of our own all too soon.
This past weekend’s contest was in memory of Chris Crocker, a dear sweet young husband and father who passed away suddenly last year from a heart attack. As with most surfers Chris’s family held a paddle out for him last year but this contest was our way of coming together and celebrating Chris’s life and the sport that he so loved. It was also a way for us to raise money to help his family without them knowing what we were up too.
Yet seeing his young son take home second place in his division was the highlight of our weekend and had us all choking back tears. Forget the competition, prizes, money and silliness this is what surfing is all about. Each one of us knows that no matter what may happen we’re surrounded by the unbreakable support system that is our surfing family.
At the end of the day the competitors head home, the tents are put away and the scaffolding is pulled down frame by frame but the sentiments remain.
Friendship, family, support and hope, those are the pillars of the surfing community.
It warms my heart to know that my family and all of the other families in my community are so loved.
All our love to you,
Shari, Surferboy & The Monkeys