On August 13, 2007, Surfers’ Environmental Alliance (SEA) hosted SEA Paddle NYC, the first-ever 28-mile surf paddle around the island of Manhattan, NYC. The paddle was the second piece of the two part event to raise money and awareness for autism. Surfing legends Gerry Lopez and Darrick Doerner participated in both parts of the event. All proceeds were given to Surfers Healing, Autism Speaks, New Jersey Center for Outreach and Services for the Autism Community (NJCOSAC) and SEA.
“I had a blast participating in the SEA Paddle NYC,” said Long Island local and water enthusiast Scott Bradley. “First and foremost, the event was about a group of surfers gathered to promote awareness for Autisum, raise money for several organizations that support kids with Autism and increase awareness for SEA, an organization that fights to preserve our coastal waterways. I was impressed by the fact that all egos were left behind at the dock. We were a group set to paddle around NYC for a cause that is bigger than all of us.”
Darrick Doerner, a North Sore Oahu local and surf legend, captured the day’s meaning before anyone hit the water, “As individuals we are limited as to what we can achieve, but as a group we have no limits. So let go, and enjoy this event!” The message resonated with the group from the entire paddle.
The first installment of this event was impressive given the logistical challenges of putting together an event of this magnitude in New York City.
Surfers and paddlers traveled from all over the world to participate in this amazing event. Representatives of Australia, Maui, England and California paddled the East and Hudson Rivers for the first time. New friendships were formed and passions shared.
Two days before the paddle, SEA organized the White Water Evening, a fundraising event to raise money and awareness for Autism. The evening featured a silent and live auction, autograph session with Darrick Doerner and Gerry Lopez, live music and open bar. When all was said and done, SEA raised research funds for Autism and coastal water preservation.
Scott Bradley sums up the paddle, “I’m sure I speak for everyone when I say that the paddle was a truly special event.”
To make a donation to any of the organizations involved in the event, please follow the links below:
For more information on the Surfers Environmental Alliance, check out this website HERE.
To view a slideshow of the event, click HERE.