For a decade now, the Costa Mesa Wood Racquet Classic has been a local staple, bringing together local elements ranging from local surfers to Hollywood producers to cancer researchers. Players compete using vintage wooden racquets and old-school white balls in a setting reminiscent of an earlier era of Orange County--sprawling, well-kept backyards shaded by old-growth trees, a wooden crow's nest for announcers and officials, an exclusive players' cocktail lounge and more. The adjoining "backyard estates" on East 20th Street, as they have been called, belong to Johnny McCray and Clay Peterson, long-time local surfers and Costa Mesa residents.
Johnny is a local menace who grew up in the surf and music scenes of Orange County.
When asked to describe the local importance of his long-time friend, Greg Teal responded, "Johnny McCray? You mean the Mayor of Costa Mesa?"
Clay, who spends much of his time producing and recording music and hanging with his kids, also works with his family supplying
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The event is open to the public, and always draws a large, boisterous crowd from the surf scene and beyond.
A $20 entrance donation is required, enabling the event raise large sums each year to support cancer research at the Hoag Cancer Center. It has been called "the social event of the summer, and in addition to helping cancer research, it always promises to be a fun time. So come support Hoag and check out the scene. As the song that plays on WoodRacquetClassic.com declares, "It's been a long long while since we've been strung out on love."