International Surfing Day celebrated in world-renowned Malibu

Malibu Surfing Association hosts International Surfing Day Beach Bingo Party. Contributed photo

Malibu Surfing Association hosts International Surfing Day Beach Bingo Party

Malibu Surfing Association celebrated International Surfing Day at First Point on June 20.

A sunny day and beautiful blue skies welcomed surfers to a “Bingo Beach Style” beach party reminiscent of 1960s Malibu beach culture where surfers would cruise to the beach, listen to music, dance, and enjoy a picnic.

Joining the MSA in the festivities were surfers from up and down the California coast, including members from surf clubs like Huntington Beach Surf Club, Pedro Point Beach Club, Santa Cruz Surf Club, Santa Barbara Surfriders, and Ventura Surf Club.

In addition to California, every nation in the world was represented at MSA’s International Surfing Day celebration, as the association planted 195 flags in the sand at First Point, each representing a country in the world.

MSA Co-President Karon Pardue said the day was perfect for celebrating the sport and lifestyle of surfing.

“We had shortboards and longboarders from all over, a beautiful day for surfing, and we honored International Surfing Day and surfing history,” Pardue said.

Surfers arrived at the beach and were treated to hot dogs cooked on the grill, and a giveaway of Jericho Poppler stickers and buttons as well as copies of The Surfer’s Journal, a reader-supported surf magazine.

Guest speakers took the beach to share stories, history, and thoughts on surfing in Malibu and around the world.

Special guests included Jericho Poppler, the first woman to win a world surfing title; Allen Sarlo, Pro Short Boarder and original member of the Z-Boys surf and skateboarding team; Kathy-Kohner Zuckerman aka “Gidget,” America’s original surfer girl; Pro Long Boarder 

Mary Osbourne; Jim Kempton, author of “Women on Waves,” and others.

Among the speakers was Andy Lyons, who spoke on surf history in Malibu and the multi-generational culture that the city has maintained throughout the years, from the times his father surfed with Malibu legends like Johnny Fain, to what surfing is today and will be in the future for his young son to enjoy.

Pardue said Malibu was the perfect location for the surf community to get together to celebrate the global phenomenon that is surfing. She praised Malibu for its world-renowned surf community and specifically for its longboard-friendly waves.

“Malibu is the place for beach bingo and surfing,” Pardue said. “It’s the heart of surfing for California. Like Hawaii’s North Shore, people from across the United States want to come here as one of the top places to surf.”

Pardue was excited to have the MSA be part of the global festivities celebrating surfing. She believes the Association’s 80-plus year history and its membership of World Champion surfers and worldwide surfing culture influence puts Malibu among one of the most important surfing locales in the world.

She said the current association’s membership spans ages 7 to 91 and is proud of the multigenerational love that has remained in Malibu.

She said the International Surfing Day celebration was a congregation of surfers brought together by the love of catching waves.

“Surfing gives back to the community. For some people it’s therapy, for some it’s a lifestyle, some just do it for fun, and some even get to do it professionally, but we all talk about it, because of the love for surfing and celebrating what we all love to do,” Pardue said.