Surfers enjoy sunset at LaPush

Surfers enjoy sunset at LaPush

Surfriders raising awareness with fundraising party

PORT ANGELES — You don’t have to know the lingo; no need to worry about pronouncing “dude” right or about what makes a wave truly gnarly.

The only requirement for full International Surfing Day participation, according to local Surfrider Shawn Canepa, is that you care.

ISD, as it’s known, is a global party in honor of the oceans.

Its North Olympic Peninsula version, hosted by the local Surfrider Foundation chapter, arrives tonight at Harbinger Winery, 2358 W. U.S. Highway 101, Port Angeles, and everyone — not just surfboard owners — is invited.

Admission to the gathering, with music by singer-songwriter-surfer Scott Sullivan and an art show by painter-surfer Todd Fischer, is $20, including appetizers and a soft drink or a glass of beer or wine.

Benefits foundation

A portion of the proceeds will benefit the local Surfrider Foundation chapter.

The event, from 6:30 p.m. until 9:30 p.m., is open to all ages, and children 12 and younger will be admitted free.

So “it’s not so much about surfing,” Canepa said of tonight’s get-together.

“International Surfing Day is more about bringing awareness to our beaches.

“So we’re going to give a brief history on ISD and a slide show of surfing around the North Olympic Peninsula.”

Surfboard donation

Snowboard and surfboard maker Lib Tech has donated a surfboard to be raffled off, Canepa added.

The company is not only generous but also environmentally conscious, he said, in that it uses clean manufacturing technology.

“We are super stoked about it,” said Canepa, a Blyn resident originally from Santa Cruz, Calif.

The Olympic Peninsula chapter of the Surfrider Foundation is seeking to connect people more closely to their ocean — and to show how North Olympic Peninsula stretches of beach are in desperate need of care.

Surfrider Darryl Wood sees the signs: garbage on the sand.

“It’s painful,” he said.

So Wood, Canepa and their fellow surfing men and women hope to form a new armada of beachcombers.

Funds from tonight will help the Surfriders organize beach cleanups throughout the year.

The chapter already joins the Earth Day cleanup here in April, Wood said, but that scarcely makes a dent in the marine debris problem.

At 64, Wood has been surfing Washington state’s waters for 50 years.

The waves on the Peninsula are world-class, he said — but so is the marine debris problem.

CoastSavers cleanup

Local Pacific Ocean and Strait of Juan de Fuca beaches are part of the annual Washington CoastSavers cleanup every spring.

According to, this past April 21 saw 1,325 volunteers remove more than 20 tons of trash statewide.

This is heartening, of course, to Wood and the Surfriders, but they would like to see even more beach care and an even wider variety of people doing it.

“We’d like to see younger people involved,” said Wood.

Canepa, who’s one of those younger people, offered another angle.

“It’s a very romantic thing to go out and pick up garbage” on the shore, he said, since “we’ve got some of the most beautiful beaches in the world.”

He and his wife, Sarah Turton Canepa, recently had “one of the nicest days” walking and picking up.

Beach cleanup is, he added, a good way for children and adults to exercise and help heal the Earth together.

More information about the Surfrider Foundation’s efforts on the Peninsula can be found at while details about International Surfing Day are at


Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5062, or at

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