Jimmy Miller Surf Fiesta puts fun back to contests

Photos by Steve Gaffney (SteveGaffney.com) and Chris Miller

The Jimmy Miller Surf Fiesta, arguably the South Bay’s most fun surf contest, and inarguably the most innovative, emerged from the pandemic last Saturday at 42nd Street in Manhattan Beach. Teams are composed of five surfers, of varying levels. Each team member must catch at least one scorable wave in their 15-minute heat before the next team member paddles out.

A nice combination of south swells and a northwest wind swell, accompanied by a medium to high tide, and glassy conditions made it easy for even the novices to catch waves.

But conditions also offered opportunity for some of the area’s top surfers to get competitive, among them Dane Acosta, Aaron Osten, Chase Gaffney, Derek and Malaya Brewer and Luke Tucker. 

South Bay Boardrider Club judges kept the competitors motivated.

Between heats, the competitors free surfed soft tops and hybrids brough to the event by Firewire Surfboards, and South Bay Board Company.

Fresh Brothers served pizza and local surf shops donated merchandise for the  popular Surf Fiesta raffle. 

Sponsors included South Bay Board Company, Firewire Surfboards, Fresh Brothers Pizza, Kinecta, Spyder Surfboards, ET Surfboards, Nixon, Rip Curl, IPD, South Bay Boardriders, and Grow.

This year’s event included participants from two of the organizations the JMMF has provided Ocean Therapy for: The Friendship Foundation (special needs young adults), and Walk with Sally (families of cancer patients).

The Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation has pioneered  the use of ocean and surf therapy to help people heal for over 15 years. For more information, visit JimmyMillerFoundation.org. 

To see more photos from the event, go to: Stevegaffney.smugmug.com/JMMF/The-Jimmy-Surf-Fiesta-100822. Password: surfing. ER


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