Eastern Surfing Association Update – July 2010

July Surfing Report: “Tybee Surfing – Alive, Well and Exploding!”

by Joe Richardson

Based on the success, amount of fun, and participation of surfers of all ages during Tybee’s International Surfing Day Celebration in June, Tybee surfing is alive, well, and growing.  With the amount of fun and activity on the beach and in the water throughout that beautiful Tybee day, you would have thought we were having glassy, overhead swells!  All the businesses, sponsors and partners with the Surfrider Foundation chapter on the beach stayed busy with surfers of all ages trying out the varieties of surfboards and stand-up paddle boards that they supplied for all to use.  Lots of volunteers were offering lessons, especially to kids, and the waves were just right for learning to surf and SUP.  There were lots of product give-aways along with some raffles for prizes, and a few contests for prizes.  We weren’t even near the end of the day when everybody agreed that we need to do this sort of event more often on Tybee.  It was just too much fun for everyone!

But without a doubt, the highlight of the day’s festivities was Tybee’s very first Push and Surf Contest organized by Tara Mosley (see front cover photo).  In the Push and Surf, kids 10 years old and under headed out into the waves with an adult who could help push the young surfer into the wave to catch a ride.  And ride they did!  These kids were terrific, surfing all the way to the beach.  It was hard to tell who was having more fun: the kids surfing, the adults and parents in the water helping them catch their first waves, or the throngs of spectators and photographers on the beach cheering them on.  The young surfers were wearing the bright colored competition jerseys provided by the Georgia District Eastern Surfing Association, and Jeff Mosley (who announces surf contests up and down the east coast) provided wave-by-wave commentary throughout the 15 minute heats.  There were so many competitors that two heats (groups) had to be run to accommodate all the young surfers.  In the end, all the competitors were awarded medals that were placed around their necks by surfer and professional snow skier Atsushi Yamada.  A ton of great memories, photographs and videos were created during this contest, and there can be no doubt that lots of kids and parents realized the stoke of surfing.  You’ve got to believe that we will be seeing lots of these kids surfing Tybee in the coming years.

Tybee YMCA Surf Camps: And speaking of kids surfing, the Tybee YMCA Surf Camps are in full swing.  These week-long camps provide kids not only instruction in surfing, but lots of needed and useful information about water safety, surfing etiquette, and use and care of equipment.  The camps have plenty of excellent instructors, so that surfers of all levels, from beginner through ready-for-competition, can gain from the week’s experience.  Jimmy Manning is heading up the instructional camps this summer, and he has a tremendous crew of helpers, many of whom are top-level competitive surfers.  To find out more about the upcoming Surf Camps, contact the Tybee YMCA.

Eastern Surfing Association Contest Dates:
The remaining dates for 2010 ESA-GA District surfing and bodyboarding contests are listed below. Not only are these contests competitive for surfers of all ages and abilities, they are the pathway leading to higher levels of competition at regional and national levels as well.  So the competition is for real. For more information about our GA District ESA activities, check our facebook page, or email: surftybee@aol.com:

Aug 14th – 7:00am sign up           Sept 11th – 7:00am sign up
Oct  2nd – 10:00am sign up,          Oct 16th – 10:00am sign up

Unless otherwise noted, the contests are held near 17th Street.  Perhaps the best way to stay informed about contest updates and the GA ESA in general, is through their facebook page, and while we’re talking about the GA ESA, this year should prove to be a very interesting and competitive surfing season.  Among the top young surfers, it will be exciting to watch Robert Powers, Noah Mosely, Alex Powers, and Ichi Yamada this year.  Robert, Noah and Alex have been surfing through the winter and spring, and Ichi spent the winter snow skiing and snow boarding in Japan, so all three of these young rippers will be better than ever.  Among the young lady surfing competitors, Georgia Cook is back on Tybee this summer (from Tennessee) and she will be shredding some waves and looking to use last year’s competition experience to move up the ranks.   Last year, 14 year-old (at the time) Josh Richardson battled throughout the season to capture the coveted Open Division Championship, and you can believe that there are plenty of guys and gals who will be going all out this year to capture the Open Championship from Josh.  The Men’s Division is always extremely competitive and close, and this year will be no different.  And the guys in the “fossils” division will all be another year older, so it will be interesting to see how an additional year of “experience” has improved their performances!  But there can be no doubt that if even half the kids that are in the Y’s surf camps and some from the ISD Push and Surf contest turn out to enter the Menehune Division, a whole new level of excitement will be added.  So whether you want to compete, or just to watch some of the east coast’s top surfers in action, come on out to the GA ESA contests.  They are family-friendly, and it’s very impressive to watch the surfers compete against each other while working together to put on a great contest.

HIGHLIGHTS OF INTERNATIONAL SURFING DAY ON TYBEE
Tybee’s Finest Young Waterboarders:
1. Alex Powers

2. Georgia Cook

3. Ichi Yamada

4. Noah Mosely

5. Robert Powers

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