Wax On, Wax Off: U.S. Open of Surfing Preview
I'm Brad. I grew up here in Orange County, surfing all our beloved beaches and points, from Seal Beach down to San Onofre. In "Wax On, Wax Off," I'll discuss the news, gossip, culture, sports and everything in between from Orange County's world of surfing, both in and out of the water. As a local surfer, I'll talk about the waves and beaches we love, the people we hang with and the places we work--speaking of which, this might be the busiest weekend of the year, so let's get right into it:
This year's U.S. Open of Surfing, July 18-26, is going to be different. Held in Huntington Beach every year, the contest always draws huge crowds and a flurry of sponsors and media coverage. Once known as the U.S. Championships, the contest we know today as the Hurley U.S. Open of Surfing has been in Huntington for 50 years. But Hurley has made it clear that this year's event will blow all of our minds and obliterate any preconceptions about the U.S. Open--the company has invested big this year to commemorate "50 Years at the Pier," hosting a fashion walk, concerts, and a variety of corporate sponsors from the action sports industry. There will be skating, Converse, Nike, BMX and a shit load of Red Bulls. Hurley's even forked out a little extra to sweeten the winner's purse, both financially and otherwise. The result is a hybridized version of the U.S. Open that will include the WPS All Star event, a first-of-its-kind format featuring "the participation of 10 the world's best surfers voted on by fans."
The Hurley U.S. Open will also host a special longboarding event that will no doubt feature a selection of the most innovative longboarders around. Watch out for Costa Mesa's own Alex Knost (also the lead singer of the Japanese Motors) in that one.
Surfline is predicting a small but shapely southwest swell, building on Friday and continuing through the weekend. The weather will be great. Avoid cancer by wearing sunscreen. Avoid heat exhaustion by drinking water. Avoid high prices by bringing a flask.
There's a lot going on, so check back for more updates about the athletes, the contests, and the happenings in HB and elsewhere. For more info and schedules, just check USOpenOfSurfing.com.
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