(June 7, 2019) The second round of the 51st annual Eastern Surfing Association (ESA) Summer Surf Series is scheduled to take place next Saturday, June 15, 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 will 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. Next Saturday’s event will take place on 48th Street from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., weather permitting. Competitors should arrive at 7:30 a.m.
The deadline to sign up for this event is Thursday, June 13.
Depending on Saturday’s weather, the competition could be moved to Sunday. Competitors should check the Delmarva ESA Facebook page for updates.
The first contest of the 2019 Summer Surf Series was held May 11 on 35th Street in Ocean City. More than 50 competitors ages 8-58 participated in the event.
“The conditions that day were surprisingly better than the forecast [called] for,” Executive Director Michelle Sommers said. “Everyone had fun and the rain held off.”
Sommers estimated earlier this week that there will be around 50 competitors for next weekend’s competition.
“Everybody has a great time,” she said. “[ESA] actually incorporates everybody to help. They ask a lot of the kids to help set up and carry things off the beach and really includes everybody to feel like they’re a part of it.”
Winners of the 24 divisions will also be competing for points to earn prizes at the awards banquet held in the fall.
The third and fifth contests will take place in Ocean City on July 13 and Sept. 28, both on 35th Street. The deadline for these contests is July 11 and Sept. 26, respectively. The third contest will be the Maryland State Surfing Championship.
The fourth and sixth events will be held at Assateague State Park on Aug. 17 and Oct. 12. The deadlines to sign up for these two events are Aug. 15 and Oct. 10, respectively.
“You don’t have to be a competitive surfer to try it out,” Sommers said. “We have a lot of women that enjoy going out surfing together. We kind of offer all levels. We want to drive people in so they don’t think that you have to be a hardcore surfer. We want people to come and have fun.”
This year, there will be an open body division for all ages; it will no longer be separated from children to adults. In addition, the contest will now include a Girls U-12 division instead an overall U-12 division.
“We are partnering up with the WSL, which is the World Surf League … which a lot of [surfers] know that’s where Kelly Slater and that’s where all the pros go,” Sommers said. “All the surfers and the kids … that’s their dream is to end up on the WSL.
“We’ve partnered with them, and our competitors this year who are surfing in our local district will qualify to compete at our championship events for next year,” she continued. “From those events they can qualify to get into some East Coast WSL events, so it’s pretty exciting.”
Each division will have trophies and plaques, as well as sponsor-donated prizes given away. The list of sponsors can be found at surfesa.org.
Surf Series participants must be ESA members. A family memberships costs $150, or $75 for an individual. A fee of $25 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).
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 promotes 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 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.
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.