Neither rain on Saturday nor sporadic fog on Sunday deterred the surfing contests at the 18th annual longboard festival at Cape Kiwanda on September 17 and 18. The sun even appeared briefly on Sunday.
The Cape Kiwanda Longboard Classic took place regardless of external conditions. As one of the organizers told the Headlight Herald, “We would not cancel except under really strong downpours or high winds. There’s so been much preparation, and people have made travel arrangements and reserved accommodations.”
More than 160 surfers competed in the preliminary heats on Saturday; those selected by the panel of judges competed again on Sunday. Contestants were divided into several groups by gender and age, ranging from children surfing with a parent to a group of three men 70 years or older. Winners in each group were awarded prizes at the awards ceremony, attended by more than 150 on Sunday afternoon.
Exemplifying the spirit of the surfers, one young man who surfed with his right arm in a sling told this reporter on Saturday that he doesn’t mind the rain but would have liked better waves. He went on to win an award in the 18 to 29 year age group.
Jeff Mollencop of the Moment Surf Company, which organized the event, said he thought things turned out “fantastic!” while admitting conditions were challenging. Fortunately, the timing of the fog moving in was good, coming just after the last heats were completed.
There was a very well attended under-tent brewfest, hosted by the Pelican Brewing Company. Proceeds from a silent auction and several raffles of donated objects (including art and surfing equipment) are to help construct a skate park in Pacific City, to be located on property controlled by the Nestucca Valley Community Alliance on the east side of Cape Kiwanda Drive.