Looking Back at NY Surf Week 2018
Celebrating its’ 9th year, New York Surf Week presented by NYSEA was one hell of a good time. NY Surf Week hosted surf & skate contests, adaptive surf clinics, a vending village on the boardwalk, movie night, and of course the annual mid-summer bash. This year saw both pro and kids surf contests along with the debut of the Lady Liberty Classic, an all-female contest. The talent coming out of NY is truly impressive and inspiring. With a good amount of contestable surf, our competitors were able to show off their wide variety of skills. We would also like to send a huge thanks to our sponsors for making it all happen: Hurley, Yeti Coolers, Honest Tea, Teton Gravity Research, Clif Bar, Chameleon Cold-Brew, Brew Dr Kombucha, Surf For All, & Skudin Surf.
The skatepark at the Long Beach Recreation Center hosted our annual ‘Bowl and Street Bash’. With director Brian Adamkiewicz behind the scenes; we knew the skate contest would be a great time. Teton Gravity Research hooked up our competitors with cash prizes, trophies and giveaways. Akin to surfing; the level of talent in New York never ceases to amaze. When the dust settled, it was Jesse McEneaney and Kenny Gonzalez who took top honors in the adult and kids contest respectively.
We asked A2Z, aka Brian Adamkiewcz, for a little recap. “After the dark clouds and sudden torrential downpour passed, the sun came out and dried up all the ramps. We had a big group of groms competing and all of the competitors parents was there cheering them on”. The Bronx claimed gold once again in the pro division, Kenny Gonzalez taking it back to the boogie down. It was Jesse Macs’ consistency on the bowl that earned him the cash in the bowl. Ashley O’Gorman took home Best trick in the bowl and went home with an awesome Yeti cooler.
Lady Liberty Classic
This year hosted the first all women’s division surf contest, aptly named the Lady Liberty Classic. The girls were ripping. A few of the competitors even entered the men’s division to give the guys a run for their money. At the end of the day, it was Alexis Engstrom, representing Montauk, who took home the cash. Morgan Iglay, Maddie Ryan, and Anna Posada took 2nd,3rd & 4th respectively. Congrats to all the girls, we were so stoked they all participated in the inaugural Lady Liberty Classic. We can’t wait to see what you bring next year.
Even though the waves weren’t the biggest we have seen, there was still plenty of surf for our surfers to battle it out and display some of their repertoire. After a long day of competition, we crowned a new champion, Alex Brooks. We had a chance to catch up with Alex; “conditions were really fun in the morning but deteriorated as the day went on. Travis, TJ, Jeff, Darren and all the usual suspects were ripping. I was just really stoked to grind my way to a win!” Travis Beckmann, Jeff Anthony & Chris Hamlet helped fill the podium. Travis took second while Jeff and Chris took equal third.
Surf For All
The Adaptive All Stars Competition returned this year and the athletes, as usual, were full of excitement and stoke. Hosted by Surf For All, a Long Beach-based non for profit, uses surfing as a catalyst to connect individuals with the ocean. “We believe the ocean is a source of healing and spiritual strength that should be accessible to all”. Everyone was winners here as the smiles were abundant and the love and stoke could be felt across the beach.
This year the Long Beach movie theater was host to our annual movie night. Kissed by God: The Andy Irons Story was the center of attention this year. The film dove into bipolar disorder and opioid addiction as seen through the life of three-time world champion surfer Andy Irons. Andy, known as the “People’s Champion” was one of the most influential surfers of our time and the film held nothing back. Many were unaware of Andy’s internal battles and struggles that led to his untimely demise. Filled with interviews from friends, family, and industry elite; it was Andy’s brother Bruce Irons’ words that really induced a fair amount of tears and chicken skin. Andy will always be remembered as one of the most talented surfers, from his patented carves and hacks to his utter fearlessness in large surf, he will be missed.
One of the highlights of Surf Week is always our annual summer blowout. As they say, “if you build it, they will come” and that’s what happened when a 4ft mini ramp was set up at Pop’s Seafood Shack in Island Park; the skaters put on an awesome show for everyone! In addition to the mini ramp action, “Off The Couch”, the highly anticipated sequel to “The Couch Tour” was premiered. OTC, made by UnSound Surf Shop in collaboration with Skell Entertainment, highlighted some of New York’s best surfers in some of the worlds best waves; filmed in Peru, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and NY.
George ‘Geeza’ Geiser Memorial Paddle-Out
For the 9th year, this is being dedicated to a revered fellow NY surfer, George “Geeza” Geiser. George was a true NY surfer who always embodied a sense of dedication and stoke. In his honor, surfers kept with tradition and gathered for an annual paddle out to say aloha to a lost friend.