Monday, December 16, 2013

Give the Gift of Surfrider!

Dear Friend of Surfrider,

Today is the absolute, final day we can take your order so it arrives on your loved one's doorstep in time for the holidays. It's also your last chance to be entered into the drawing to win one of two Firewire surfboards!

When you purchase a Holiday Gift Membership, you're not only giving the gift of enjoyment to your favorite beach enthusiast, but you are protecting and preserving our oceans, waves and beaches for everyone to enjoy. It's a gift that truly gives back...

Click here to order!

Happy Holidays to you and yours,

The Surfrider Foundation

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Short Notice Beach Cleanup This Saturday (Dec 7th) in Westport

Please join us for an impromptu beach cleanup this Saturday, December 7th at Westhaven State Park in Westport.  We will be scouring the beach for plastic, foam, and other debris from 1-3 pm.  See you there!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

2013 Coastal Marine Resource Committee Summit

First of all, I’d like to again thank everyone for participating in the 4th annual coastal MRC summit.  It was a great collection of dedicated individuals, and the presentations were very informative.  I hope everyone was able learn some lessons and went home with plenty of new knowledge.

I would also like to thank Carrie Backman, Carol Ervest, Wahkiakum County MRC and the entire Cathlamet community for hosting us.  Numerous people commented on how pleasant and welcoming the entire town was.  A high bar has been set for next year’s summit!

There were many requests for the powerpoint presentations from our speakers.  Almost all have confirmed that I can share those presentations with the group, and more may become available soon. Those that are available now can be accessed by clicking on the respective presentation below.

Additionally, Cathy Lear has asked that I pass along some additional info regarding two public forums in Port Angeles next week, which will cover ecosystem services evaluation.
Join us for a public forum on the economic value of Clallam County ecosystems. The forums will be held in the Commissioners’ meeting room at the Clallam County courthouse, 23 E. 4th Street, Port Angeles. Click here for more details. 
Dave Batker, Tracy Stanton, & Lola Flores, of Earth Economics will describe natural capital accounting, and ecosystem service values in Clallam County with emphasis on the central Clallam County nearshore. 
Two 2-hour sessions on December 5th will introduce the basics of ecosystem services valuation (ESV) and mechanics of these tools to quantify the economic value of specific services in Clallam County.  The December 6th session will provide an overview presentation of Ecosystem Services of the Central Strait of Juan de Fuca to the Ecosystem Recovery Network. The ecosystem services valuations are part of a larger study funded by EPA and WDFW.
Again, thanks to all those who attended the summit and your continued dedication to our marine resources!

Details about the summit are below. Presentations can be downloaded by clicking on the
blue highlighted text.

    November 7th – 9th, 2013
    Cathlamet, Washington
    Wahkiakum County Building - 64 Main Street
    Pioneer Church - 100 Main Street
     Hotel Cathlamet - 69 Main Street


November 7th - Wahkiakum County Building - Commissioners Room (3rd floor)
  1:00    Facilitating Collaborative Meetings Intro - Kelly Rupp, Bev Arnoldy, Eric Delvin
  1:10    Organizing & Running Effective Meetings
             Public vs. Other Meetings
  2:00    Group Decision Making Dynamics and Processes
  3:30    Meeting Management Using Parliamentary Procedure
  4:00    Panel Discussion  (with special guests Frank Wolfe, Mark Swartout, and Jackie Ferrier)
  5:00    Wrap-up and Adjourn
  6:00    Happy Hour - Tsuga Art Gallery

November 8th - Pioneer Church
  7:30    Breakfast and socializing - Thyme Square Bistro (next to Hotel Cathlamet)
  8:30    Greetings and Introduction - Carrie Backman
  8:40    MRC Updates
                - Whakiukum County MRC - Carrie Backman
                - Pacific County MRC - Megan Martin
                - Grays Harbor County MRC - Garrett Dalan
                - North Pacific Coast MRC - Tami Pokorny
  9:40    Columbia Fishing Regulations and Impacts on Coastal Fisheries - Mike Burner
  11:00  Funding Coastal Restoration Projects – Eric Delvin
  12:00  Lunch
  1:00    Shoreline Master Program (SMP) Updates
                - Shoreline Master Program Update Overview – Kim Van Zwalenburg
                - Aquaculture SMP Guidance – Cedar Bouta
                - Relationship between SMP Updates and Marine Spatial Planning – Jennifer Hennessey
                - Lessons learned from Clallam County Update Process – Cathy Lear
                - Panel Q&A
  4:00    Cathlamet Walking Tour - Local History and Marine Resources
  6:00    Dinner - Thyme Square Bistro

November 9th - Pioneer Church
  8:00    Breakfast and socializing - Thyme Square Bistro
  9:00    Ocean Acidification: From Knowledge to Action
- Carbon Exports and Ocean Acidification - Eric Swenson
- Cultivating Seaweed to Mitigate OA, Generate Habitat, Fertilizer, Food & Fuel - Mike Rust
                - Creating Refuges from Acidification and Sea Level Rise - Brad Warren
  12:00  Working Lunch Focusing on Planning Process with Ocean Acidification Group
  1:00    WCMAC Developments and Coordinating MRC Activities - Doug Kess
  1:30    Marine Plastic Pollution - Angel White
  2:15    The Science of Hatchery and Harvest Reform - Andy Appleby and Steve Smith
  3:00    Closing Remarks and Conclusion

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The Best MSP Video To Date

The Surfrider Foundation is working with several partner organizations to bring to you, the residents of Washington State, the most comprehensive planning process for coastal and marine resources to date.

To educate the public and encourage participation in the process, we have developed a short video that explains what Marine Spatial Planing (MSP) is really all about, why it is important, and how you can get involved.

To learn more and get engaged in the MSP process, visit:

For more about Surfrider in Washington state, visit:

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Great Summary of Ocean Acidification and Local Impacts by Oregon Surfrider Staff

Gus Gates, my colleague in Oregon, has put together an excellent summary of Ocean Acidification and how local actions can have significantly impacts, for better or for worse.

"The emerging issue of ocean acidification (OA) has been getting a lot of recent attention via media, in community ocean forums, and by elected officials wondering what role governments might be able to play in addressing its impacts. While it’s important that we recognize that this is a global issue largely resulting from the increased amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) being pumped into the atmosphere and absorbed by the ocean, it’s also important to understand that there are local actions that can help mitigate the impacts of acidification on aquatic ecosystems and regional economies and cultures. Many of these local actions are directly connected to Surfrider’s existing clean water programs and campaigns."

Read the whole post here.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Reminder: Send In Your Comments About Marine Spatial Planning

The sun is setting for public comments on the draft goals and objectives for Washington State's Marine Spatial Planning.  The final day is next Monday, the 23rd.

If you haven't already, take a few minutes and share your thoughts.

For more info, see our earlier blog post:

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Be part of the future: participate in a study on recreational uses of Washington’s coast

What the survey is about: 
Surfrider and Ecotrust are developing a survey to document Non-Consumptive Ocean and Coastal Recreation on the Pacific Coast of Washington. The survey will ask you about where you recreate on the coast, what activities you do there, and the money you spend on those activities. Then we can make maps that show the density of recreation happening on our beaches and what they are worth in dollars. You can see how Oregon already completed a similar study.

Why you should take part:
The results of the survey will help coastal planning when we have to make important decisions about the future of our coastlines and ocean. You can see the map layers the state is pulling together at the new website. If we can show the numbers of people using specific beaches for surfing and the money they bring into the local community, for example, then we can protect our surf breaks from development! (It’s called surfenomics- check out this article)

How it works:
When you see the survey advertised (on this blog or in your local surf shop) complete it and then pass it on to your friends. Or to get the survey sent to your inbox, email Casey at

Launch date TBD

You can keep in touch with what’s going on at our Washington State Surfrider Chapters page, policy blog or Facebook page, or the State’s MSP website. Learn more about the economic value of coastal recreation at Save the Waves.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Why should I care about marine spatial planning?

Photo credit: Tyna McNair
All this talk about Marine Spatial Planning can be a bit confusing, especially for those of us who do not spend our time tackling legislative issues.  The truth is that the entire process of Marine Spatial Planning is really about the people living near and using the ocean, first and foremost.  Understanding how Marine Spatial Planning relates specifically to you and your recreational enjoyment is vital to the process.

Access to Recreational Areas
With a coastline of over 3,000 miles, Washington has a plethora of coastal areas to enjoy.  Despite its apparent abundance, continued development of the coast has limited public access to our coastal areas and beaches.  This includes public resources that we have a right to access.  This is one reason to take part in Marine Spatial Planning-to help keep industry out of our important recreational areas.  Various commercial activities like oil drilling, coal transport, or energy exploration pose threats to the waves and waters we value for their recreational opportunities like surfing and kayaking.  Anticipating and planning for changes in coastal commercial activity is vital for areas with high recreational value.  We can do this with Marine Spatial Planning.

Health of Recreational Areas
Keeping our recreational areas healthy is an important part of our experience outdoors.  After all, we do not want our children to play in polluted water.  Nor would we enjoy taking in a view of the beach inundated by plastic and other garbage.  We value the areas where we recreate, and part of that means taking care of them properly and making sure that their value is properly accounted for in the Marine Spatial Planning process.

Enjoyment for All
The ocean provides us with many natural resources and provides a myriad of benefits for humans and animals alike.  This is why we need to ensure that recreationalists are not priced out of areas and their hobbies-the oceans and beaches should be enjoyed by everyone.  Surfrider was born from an innate love of the water, and part of our mission is to protect that resource for the enjoyment of all.  Just because the coast has high economic value does not mean that only a subset of the population should enjoy it: the waves are for everyone.

Help with the Marine Spatial Planning process by understanding how it relates to you, and make sure to participate in the public commenting period (see previous post).  Remember, this process aims to bring multiple stakeholders together to create solutions that work for us all.  So help out the process and make sure that you are heard!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Surfing and traditions at La Push

Here is what you missed while we were at the beach...

our boards were waxed and ready to go

a paddling song set our intentions right for the day

we got all suited up, with our smiles on

then we circled up

got our bodies moving

practiced our moves (doesn't everybody need to work on their jumpshot?)

worked on our dunking too!

We learned the ways of the water and how to be safe

and did our best hang-ten!

Then we tried to catch those waves

and we got it!

Success is best when you can share it with your friends! 
*Thank you, thank you so much tribal members for the paddle song, Quileute Housing Authority for the towels and food, US Coast Guard for keeping an eye on us, NOAA and Quileute Tribal Council for your support*

Learn more about what Warm Current is doing on the coast at
Go surf with the kids and make some new friends at Neah Bay this coming Saturday, August 17th,  
or just come say hi and see what it's all about.

Cleanup with WA CoastSavers at Pt. Grenville

What a success! We helped get 1700 pounds of garbage off the beach on July 27th at Pt. Grenville, Taholah on the Quinault Indian Reservation. 40 volunteers showed up- just have a look at our day below.

 We braved the fog and cold while beach driving in search of marine debris.

We found a bit of time to make friends and chat about the ocean with volunteers.

We found so much garbage!  A few common items were fireworks, fishing gear, rope, but we also found a few curious items like a squirt gun, tires, a piece of a boat trailer, and an entire blue tarp!

If enjoying the beach is for everyone, then cleaning the beach is for everyone! 
Join us next time and then enjoy the rest of your day at the beach while you're at it! 
International Coastal Cleanup is September 21st. Find out more at

Friday, August 2, 2013

Protect the Future of Your Favorite Beach

Do you love the beach?  Who doesn’t, right?  Well, now you can get involved in protecting your favorite beach by participating in the process of Marine Spatial Planning (MSP).  If you use the beach and ocean for anything from family excursions to tow-in surfing, then we encourage you to speak up!

Washington State is seeking public comment on the recently released draft goals and objectives for MSP, which is the process of mapping uses and resources of the marine environment so that they can be intelligently managed and new uses can be evaluated with better information.  In addition, a crucial part of MSP is involving stakeholders and the public in the process, and that’s why your input is so valuable.

This spring and early summer Washington SeaGrant convened local, state, and federal agency staff with members from the Washington Coastal Marine Advisory Council to develop goals and objectives that will guide decisions regarding MSP, resulting in the draft that is now open for public comment. MSP is currently focusing on the coastal waters of Washington, ranging from Ilwaco to Port Angeles and includes the estuaries, such as Willapa Bay and Grays Harbor, up to the tidal mean high water mark.

Coastal recreators should be interested in this process because it can offer better protection of the ocean and beaches that we use for walking, clamming, surfing, kayaking, bird watching, and escaping the hustle and bustle of modern life.

Please take time to read the draft goals and objectives for MSP and provide any comments.  Your time investment will pay off in the future when your favorite beach is protected!  You can find the draft (called the “scoping document”), and comment cards here:

In addition to any issues you find, we recommend making the following suggestions:

  • Suggest adding this overarching goal: “Protect and preserve existing sustainable uses.”
  • Convey how important protection and access to recreational areas are to coastal communities who economically benefit and to the general public as a whole whose quality of life is enhanced by playing outside.
  • Emphasize the importance of protecting the marine ecosystem including important habitats, biodiversity, and ecological functions

Please email your comments to by September 23, 2013.  Your voice is very important in helping shape the future of our valuable coastline.  Now is your chance to be heard!

More information about MSP can be found here: and

Monday, July 22, 2013

Kids + Surfing at Neah Bay = Awesome

By 9 AM the cars were steadily rolling into Hobuck camp ground in Neah Bay on Saturday.  The kids climbed out - many already in swimsuits - excited to participate in the surf camp put on by Warm Current.  Some kids remembered surfing with us last year and were back for another go!

The whole crowd did some warm-up and stretching before learning the surfing basics and safety.  Things got pretty silly as we practiced paddling in the sand.  We also did a little beach clean up - it seems there is always garbage to pick up at the beach.

Photo credit: Tyna Mcnair

And then we all got in the water - the kids did great and really showed off how quickly they can learn surf skills!

 Photo credit: Tal Vick

Some kids were more hesitant than others...

Photo credit: Tyna Mcnair

But some were ready to stand up!

Photo credit: Tyna Mcnair

Photo credit: Tal Vick

Photo credit: Tyna McNair

Getting kids stoked about playing in our ocean was a success! Their smiles were big- and we hear they'd like to have even more surf camps.

Photo credit: Tyna Mcnair

Volunteers from all over Washington and Oregon arrived the night before the surf camp to get to know each other- we hope you can join us next time!

Check out what Warm Current is doing on the West Coast and how you can join in the fun at an upcoming event on the WA Coast at:

See you at the beach!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Art Gallery Kickoff and Surfrider Fundraiser a Success

There was a solid turnout for the summer kickoff of Todd Fischer’s surf art gallery in Westport last Saturday.  Check out his rad surf art at or drop by the gallery next time you’re in town. 

There was lots of sun and live music to enjoy, and bonus - there were homemade desserts and plenty of ‘Wetsuit Wheat’ beer donated by Westport Brewing Co (Thanks guys!).  Todd revealed two gorgeous murals and many lucky raffle winners went home with his donated original artwork in the form of a framed print, snowboard decal, hoodies, and tees!  Watch out for his art on Surfrider swag and buy some raffle tickets to have your chance next time.

Taking a break from entertaining us

Just hanging out

Revealing one of the murals

Enjoying the shop

Over $200 was raised at this event to support Washington Surfrider chapters!  These funds can be used for all kinds of projects by local chapters, like keeping our beaches clean.  Want to become a member? Go to: We’d love to see you at an event this summer! Check our Facebook page or request to get our email newsletter for details.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Clean Up the Beach with Surfrider and Washington State Parks at Westport on July 6th

The 4th of July is a great time to visit the beach and spend time with the family.  Another tradition of this All-American holiday is watching and using fireworks.  Too often, when fireworks are used on the beach, their remnants are left behind and get taken out to sea during the next high tide.  To remove this and other debris before it joins the ocean, the Surfrider Foundation is partnering with Washington State Parks to coordinate a beach cleanup in Westport on July 6th, from 9:00AM to 1:00PM.

Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission is commemorating its 2013 Centennial Celebration throughout the state. Pease join us in supporting the Commission by volunteering to clean up part of the public lands they manage.  Registrations will begin at 9:00AM at Westhaven State Park. During the cleanup, there will be refreshments and interpretive displays. Volunteer hours worked during the cleanup can be accumulated toward earning an Annual Discover Pass (Requires 24 total hours and volunteers need to sign up before starting the volunteer project). 

Following this event will be a BBQ at Todd Fischer’s Surf-Art Gallery in Westport's marina district (across the street from the Islander), with food and beverages for volunteers provided by Washington Surfrider Foundation Chapters.