Ocean City Today

ESA Summer Surf Series contests continue Saturday

By Intern, Morgan Pilz | Jul 20, 2017
Photo by: Greg Ellison Riley Evans looks at ease while riding a wave during the ESA Summer Surf Series, June 24. The action continues this Saturday in the ocean near Assateague Island State Park.

(July 21, 2017) The third round of the 50th annual Eastern Surfing Association (ESA) Summer Surf Series will take place this Saturday, July 22, where amateur surfers can compete to win prizes and a chance to qualify for the ESA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship and the ESA Eastern Surfing Championship.

Competitors of all ages can participate in divisions including Bodyboard, Shortboard, Longboard and Stand up Paddleboard. There is also an “Open” division for Shortboard and Bodyboard where all age divisions are eligible to compete.

Competitors must arrive to the designated ready area 15 minutes before their competition begins.

This Saturday’s event will take place in the water at Assateague Island State Park from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. In addition, there will be a bonfire on the beach and camping after the competition ends. An entry fee to the park costs $8 and tent sites cost $30. A cookout including hamburgers, hot dogs and S’mores will be provided.

“We expect this Assateague contest to be our biggest contest this year,” Delmarva ESA District Co-Director Mark Donohue said. “We hope to have good surf and fair weather so many people can enjoy a gem that we are fortunate is located right on our Delmarva peninsula.”

The contest will take place north of the group campsite crossover. There will be campsite rentals available. To sign up or learn more about campsite rental visit dnr.maryland.gov or call 1-888-432-CAMP.

The deadline to register for this event was July 20, but participants can sign up the day of the event for an additional $15, however, there are limited spaces available. The cost to participate is $20 for the first division and $10 for every division after.

The first ESA event took place June 3 in the water near 30th Street in Ocean City.

“[It]…was a great success,” Donohue said. “We had fun waves and sunny weather [and] the heats ran smoothly…”

The second series competition was held on June 24 in the water near 46th Street.

“The [second] contest was great,” Donohue said. “We had very good surf all day, especially in the morning with some head-high sets. Overall, the event was great and there was some excellent surfing.”

There were more 100 participants and spectators on hand for both competitions.

“A lot of the participants are repeating [competitors] because they accumulate points to qualify for [the] Regional Championship and the Eastern Championship,” Donohue said.

The fourth and fifth events will take place in the water near 46th Street on Aug. 19 and Sept. 30. The deadlines to register for these two events are Aug. 17 and Sept. 28, respectively. The cost to participate in an event at each competition is $20, $10 for each additional division.

Founded in 1967 by East Coast Surfers, ESA was created to promote, preserve and protect the sport of surfing on the East Coast. ESA is dedicated to the sport of amateur surfing, as well as the operation of a program of amateur competition for surfers of all ages and abilities.

In addition, ESA promoted the establishment and preservation of free access to a clean shoreline and ocean environment.

ESA is the largest amateur surfing association in the world. The association’s activities are organized into a total of 25 districts, which extend along nearly 2,000 miles of coastline.

Stretching from Maine through the Gulf Coast of Florida, Alabama and the Great Lakes, each district’s programs are developed and operated by a dedicated group of volunteer directors and staff.

“The ESA Summer Surf Series events have been going on in Ocean City for decades where local surfers and bodyboarders have an opportunity to compete in monthly contests throughout the summer and early fall,” Donohue said. “Since surfing is generally an individual sport, the ESA contests are a great opportunity to link up with other surfers in the community, sharpen your skills and spend a day enjoying our local beaches.”

Each division will have trophies and awards, as well as sponsor-donated giveaway prizes. The list of sponsors can be found at surfesa.org.

Participants must be ESA members. A family memberships costs $95. A competition membership costs $65 for all divisions. A fee of $20 covers the first event during each contest, and $10 for every other division after. Supporting membership cost $35 and is for non-competitors. To become a lifetime member the cost is $1,000 (includes five divisions).

Scheduling info can be found on the delmarva.surfesa.org website or Delmarva ESA Facebook. Updates on ESA’s website and social media will be frequent since the association will occasionally have to make adjustments due to surf/weather forecast.

Anyone interested in signing up for the events can do so at Delmarva.surfsignup.com which can be found on the Delmarva ESA Facebook page and Delmarva website at delmarva.surfesa.org. Those who are looking for age specific events can find the age divisions at www.surfesa.org. Questions can be sent to delmarva@surfesa.org or through messenger on Delmarva ESA’s Facebook page.

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