Once again, Ocean City’s surfing community plans to display its big heart on August 12, with the 2nd Annual Catch Surf Rodeo.
The contest will benefit “future shredder Rylee Crowley, a local toddler currently being treated for a rare form of leukemia.
Willie Fannon, creator and organizer of the event, said it will take place at the 51st St. Beach, with registration beginning at 8 a.m. There will be a $20 registration fee to benefit Reylee, the daughter of Matt and Kara Crowley. Matt is a member of the Ocean City Police department.
“This is an opportunity to give back, and this is an extremely worthy cause,” said Fannon. He formed the event last year to benefit his younger brother Greg, currently in remission in his own battle with leukemia.
“Rylee is in remission as well, but the costs associated with something like this are staggering,” Fannon added. “Here is a great chance to help out a freat local family and to have a lot of fun doing so.”
The ‘rodeo” format of the contest is more about fun than competition, Fannon added. Participants will randomly draw to find out if they will be competing on a body board, standup paddle board or traditional surfboard without fins.
Divisons include groms, open, men and women.
There will also be a special “Heart of Surfing” session for surfers with special needs. The highlight will be rides on a giant inflatable six-person paddleboard.
“That is going to be a lot of fun and a great chance for the special needs surfers to get together,” Fannon said.
For more information or to contribute to the cause, call 609-736-0131
The event is being held in conjuction with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of America.Sponsors include Surfers Supplies, Amphibia apparel, Zinka, Ocean City NJ Surf School, Paddle Company, Peace of Wood, Elation Surf Camps and Red Paddle Company.
“We hope people come out and support the event, have fun and help out some great local people who are truly deserving,” Fannon said.