LONG BRANCH – Over 100 surfers, the largest turnout ever, gathered at Seven Presidents Oceanfront Park in Long Branch for Clean Ocean Action’s 4th Annual Surf Open contest.
The participating surfers ranged from 6-year-olds to pros who came out not only to enjoy the beautiful waves, but to support a clean ocean.
The event raised over $25,000 this year because of an overwhelming amount of support from the sponsors, contestants and patrons.
Volunteers were there all day, from the setup to breakdown as well as non-stop judging and heat rotation.
“Sunday, September 26, was a remarkable day! We were gifted with great waves, weather and surfing at this year’s COA Open, which importantly, raises awareness about protecting our most crucial natural resource, the ocean. Splashing fish joined the lineup and the sun was shining brightly all day,” Contest Director Tyler Thompson said. “The success of the event is due to the help of our committee members, volunteers, and sponsors who showed inspirational support of the local surf community, the event, and Clean Ocean Action. It is a testament to how special the ocean environment is and how we all need to work to protect it. We’re already looking forward to next year.”
Some great surfers that competed in this year’s event included including pros Paul Fransisco, Mike Gleason, Pat Parenty, and Jon Smyth.
Internationally ranked pro surfer Balaram Stack from Long Island won 1st Place in the Pro Division and donated the $1,000 prize to Clean Ocean Action. Jon Smyth also donated his prize money to COA after scoring 1st place in the Men’s 18 & Up division for the second year.
The winner of the Grom Boys 12 & Under division was 10-year-old Carter Doorley. He told COA that his goal is to surf every day throughout the year for as long as possible. The contest was his 490th day of consecutive surfing days.
“COA is most grateful to the remarkable community-wide collaboration that made the event possible, with the outstanding committee who brought it all together. The Monmouth County Freeholders and especially the Monmouth County Parks and Recreation Commission, have COA’s sincere and beachy gratitude for allowing the event to take place,” COA said in a statement.
To learn more about the Clean Ocean Action, visit cleanoceanaction.org.