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Brazilian youths participate in a beach clean-up on International Surfing Day

International Surfing Day, held annually on or near the date of the summer solstice[1] — usually June 20[2] (21 June on leap years)[1] — is an unofficial, environmentally-conscious[3] sports-centered holiday that celebrates the sport of surfing and the surfing lifestyle and the sustainability of ocean resources.[4][5] The holiday has been criticized for being overly corporate.[6] Contests and prizes[7] are also part of the celebration with surfing related industries donating prizes such as surfboards and wetsuits.[3] Another purpose of the celebration is to promote the popularity of surfing and attracting new participants.[8]



A Naupaka bush closeup of the dark green ovalleaves and white flowers.

Established in 2004[9] by Surfing Magazine[10][11] and The Surfrider Foundation,[10][11] International Surfing Day is a worldwide[12] celebration of the sport of surfing. The day is observed with surf contests,[11] barbecues,[13] film screenings[3] and other surf-related activities. Surfers also use the day to give back to the environment by organizing beach clean-ups,[9][10][11][14][15][16] dune and other habitat restoration[13] and other activities[5] such as lobbying to maintain the recreation areas in California where surfing occurs, or Naupaka planting in Hawaii.[1][17] Direct action was used by form of protest on this day in England to express opposition to sewage in the waters of the Gold Coast; a precarious problem for many surfers who become infected by the bacteria from open wounds from sports related injuries.[18]


Extent of celebrations

International Surf Day events have been held on all populated continents including South America where it is celebrated in Argentina,[12] Brazil,[2] and Peru.[2] Also in the Southern Hemisphere the holiday is observed in the Oceanian nations of Australia[19] and New Zealand.[2] The day is also widely observed in the American state of Hawaii, also in Oceania.[5][16]

In North America the surfing day is most widely observed and celebrations may be found in Canada,[2] Costa Rica,[2] the French Antilles,[2] El Salvador,[20] Mexico,[21] and in the majority of coastal states of the United States, Connecticut,[2] New York,[2] North Carolina,[2] Virginia,[2] Maryland,[2] District of Columbia,[2] Maine,[2] Texas,[2] New Jersey,[9][10][22] California,[1][7] Oregon,[13] South Carolina,[23] Florida,[15][24] and Georgia.[25]

After North America the observance has the most popularity in Europe: including in most of the coastal European Union and it is held by surf enthusiasts in France,[2][8] Italy,[8] the United Kingdom[2] [including England[18] and Cornwall[2]], Portugal,[8] Spain,[8] and Belgium.[2] Further European celebrations are held in Norway,[8] in addition to many of the EU nations overseas possessions.

In Africa, the two French territories of: Réunion and Mayotte[8] hold annual festivities alongside Morocco,[8] Ghana, the Spanish insular area of the Canary Islands[8] and South Africa. The day has also taken hold in some Asian countries like Israel,[8] Japan,[2] and Korea.

See also


  1. ^ a b c d Surf's up by Jen Ingan, New Times, Strokes and Plugs, June 19, 2008, access date June 27, 2008
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t About, International Surfing Day, access date June 25, 2008
  3. ^ a b c International Surfing Day Gets Challenging, Surfline, Press Release, June 16, 2008, access date June 26, 2008
  4. ^ The Third Annual International Surfing Day is back Friday June 20th, by Nicole DeJesus, access date June 27, 2008
  5. ^ a b c International Surfing Day Clean Up Set for June 21, By Jenna Ishii, 6/9/2008, Hawaii Reporter, access date June 27, 2008
  6. ^ International Surfing Day and NASCAR?, by Jay DiMartino,, access date June 25, 2008
  7. ^ a b International Surfing Day announces challenges & prizes, SurfersVillage, 16 June, 2008, access date June 27, 2008
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h i j (English) & (French)Surfing Day celebrated on beaches throughout Europe/UNE VAGUE SANS FRONTIERES !, June 25, 2008, Surfers Village, access date June 30, 2008
  9. ^ a b c projects focus of Surf Day petition, by Sarah Webster,, June 22, 2008, access date June 25, 2008
  10. ^ a b c d O.C., A.C. celebrate surfing 'holiday' today by Jon Coen, For The Press/, June 20, 2008, access date June 25, 2008
  11. ^ a b c d International Surfing Day Gets Challenging, June 16, 2008, access date June 25, 2008
  12. ^ a b (Spanish)Conciencia ecológica en el Día Mundial del Surf, La Capital (newspaper), access date June 27, 2008
  13. ^ a b c On The Sidelines, Newport News Times, June 20, 2008, access date June 27, 2008
  14. ^ Surfers have global mission, SeaCoastOnline, access date June 22, 2008
  15. ^ a b Lake Worth: International Surfing Day to be marked at city beach, June 16, 2008, Lake Worth Sun-Sentinel, access date June 26, 2008
  16. ^ a b Harbor gets a Surfing Day cleanup, by Rachale Gehrlein, June 25, 2008, access date June 26, 2008
  17. ^ Surfrider Foundation hosts Hookipa cleanup, The Maui News, June 18, 2008, access date June 27, 2008
  18. ^ a b SAS celebrate International Surfing Day at the Gold Coast Festival, 20 June, 2008, access date June 27, 2008
  19. ^ News International Surfing Day by Richard Hardy, June 19, 2008, Drift Surf Magazine, access date June 26, 2008
  20. ^ El Salvador Takes International Surfing Day To New Heights, by Emilia Estrada, Surfing Magazine, access date June 27, 2008
  21. ^ (Spanish)El viernes 20 de Junio se celebra el Día Internacional del Surf 2008, by Carlos Cohen, Surfeando, 18 June 2008, access date June 27, 2008
  22. ^ Brick Beach III to hold International Surf Day, Brick Township Bulletin, access date June 26, 2008
  23. ^ International Surfing Day on Friday - Summer of Surf Celebration This Weekend on Folly Beach, Moultrie News, June 18, 2008, access date June 27, 2008
  24. ^ Justin Beard: Board Meeting, by Justin Beard, June 19, 2008, access date June 27, 2008
  25. ^ ESA Georgia Surf Contest This Weekend, TransWorldSurf, June 24, 2008, access date June 25, 2008

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