Surf contest begins today

LIHUE — This weekend the Garden Island Boogie Board Classic is being held at PK’s and Center’s in Poipu.

It begins at 7 a.m. today, continues Sunday, and features pro and amateur divisions on both days.

The first round of the open men’s competition kicks off today’s competition, followed by the drop knee pro at 8:20 a.m. and nine amateur rounds with categories for a range of age groups, ending with the stand up final at 1:50 p.m.

Day two starts with the second round of the pro men’s and drop-knee competitions and ends with the amateur finals and an award ceremony at Prince Kuhio Park at 3 p.m.

On Friday, the event’s organizers said 164 people — among them, two drop-knee world champions from Kauai — had signed up for the competition. There will be a $5,200 prize purse for the pro divisions, and over $10,000 in donated prizes will be handed out in the amateur divisions.

This year is the first for the Garden Island Boogie Board Classic, and organizers hope to make it an annual event.

Former pro boogie boarders Chris Burkart and Jeff Hubbard teamed up to organize the competition with Falcon Valeria, a youth mentor with Hale Kipa, a nonprofit that serves at-risk youth.

Hubbard said they envisioned the competition as a way to showcase Kauai’s local talent, which he described as “some of the best body boarders on the island,” while creating a space where young people can interact with professional boogie boarders who have “that kupuna vibe.”

A press release said the Garden Island Boogie Board Classic wants to showcase the elite boarders and the up-and-coming generation so that they can respect not only each other, but the ocean, too.

Today’s schedule:

Open men — 7 a.m. (6:45 a.m. check in)

Drop-knee pro — 8:20 a.m.

Menehune — 10 a.m.

Round 2 open men — 11 a.m.

Masters — 11 a.m.

Menehune / juniors semifinal — 12:20 p.m.

Super grom — 12:50 p.m.

Stand up — 12:50 p.m.

Super grom final — 1:50 p.m.

Girls final — 1:50 p.m.

Stand up final — 1:50 p.m.

Sunday schedule:

Pro men round 2 — 7 a.m. (6:45 a.m. check in)

Drop-knee pro round 2 — 8 a.m.

Open men semifinal — 9 a.m.

Masters semifinal — 9:40 a.m.

Pro men semifinal — 10:20 a.m.

Pro drop-knee semifinals — 11 a.m.

Amateur finals — 11:40 a.m.

PAU — 2 p.m.

Awards ceremony at Prince Kuhio Park — 3 p.m.

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Caleb Loehrer, staff writer, can be reached at 245-0441 or cloehrer@thegardenisland.com.

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