Urban Surf 4 Kids, a San Diego-based non-profit group that encourages orphans and foster children to get in the water to not only help them learn how to swim, but also to help build their self-esteem and confidence, is looking for volunteers for this weekend’s surf camp.

The event, held at Blackies on the north side of the Newport Beach Pier at tower 24, will be this Saturday, March 24 from 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. This will be Urban Surf 4 Kids’s second Orange County event. They launched their first OC event late last month, and taught the kids how to Stand Up Paddle with Tom Jones.

This weekend, the group is looking for volunteers to help out, and is looking for qualified lifeguards, surf instructors, and any other volunteers who have experience working with children. They could also use a few soft top surfboards, SUP’s, kayaks and wetsuits that anyone could spare for the afternoon.

This Saturday’s Blackies event is being sponsored by several local surf organizations including Clint Carroll’s Surf School. Clint is the son of world-famous surfing icon, Corky Carroll. Corky is a five time US Surfing Champion, three time international Champion, International Big Wave Champion, and was named the number one surfer in the world by Surfer magazine. The Urban Surf 4 Kids Surf Camp will be held on the beach located directly in front of Corky Carroll’s newest boardwalk location in Newport Beach.

UrbanSurf4kids was started in 2009 by Wesley Stewart to help orphans in Mexico, Haiti and other areas get involved in sports programs, and encourage the kids to give back to their communities. Their very simple motto is Surf and Serve! The goal is to teach surfing with the agreement of kids to volunteer in their choice of community service.

If you’re interested in helping, please contact Mark Ralph, the Volunteer Event Director of Urban Surf 4 Kids at markralph@cox.net or (949) 297-8598. For further information on the organization, check out their site at www.urbansurf4kids.org.

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The swim season is almost here, and the annual swimsuit issue of Surfing Magazine goes on sale in just a few weeks, April 3, 2012. Below is a video teaser of the bikinis and beauties you’ll catch in the issue, and a few of our very own fave suits now available on our Becker site:

VOLCOM GIRLS
Style No: O2311280

Sexy strings! The Volcom Rear View Bikini Bottom features a strand side, adjustable ties, a scrunched back detail, and a metal logo applique. Price: $44.00

BILLABONG
Style No: X232TONE

You can’t go wrong with a white suit to show off your tan. The women’s Billabong One Love bikini features a crochet bikini, a triangle top with adjustable neck and back ties, an adjustable bottom, and a Bob Marley logo patch at the back. Price: $69.50

O’NEILL GIRLS
Style No: 12474092

Channel the tropics with the women’s O’Neill Shangri La bikini top, which features a floral print, a triangle top, and adjustable neck and back straps. Price: $38.00

TAVIK
Style No: T001

We’re crushing on this brand, which has some of the hippest suits right now. The women’s Tavik Jackie bikini top features a 80′s inspired shape print, and a triangle top with adjustable neck and back ties. Best news of all? It’s on sale! Price: $58.00 $26.99

TIGERLILY
Style No: S15T2470

Missing a leather bikini in your swimsuit wardrobe? The women’s Tigerlily Aella bikini is made of 100% suede! It features a washable suede, an adjustable neck and back closure, a triangle top with a rope tie, and a solid bottom. Scrumptuous. Price: $113.61

ROXY
Style No: 619017

We think the women’s Roxy Wrapped bikini top is so sweet. It features a t-strap back, a pretty floral pattern, a halter top, and a tie center closure. Price: $46.00

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The American Pro Surfing Series, a new domestic surfing series, will kick off next month. The purpose of the series is to give professional surfers who aren’t at the top tier of the sport more opportunities to compete in the US.

Beginning April 25 in Huntington Beach, the new events are being created to fill a void for surfers who are ranked highly enough to earn sponsorships and be considered pro surfers – but have few opportunities to surf in big contests in the United States, said Scott Waring, founder of the APSS.

Three stops are scheduled at the South Side of the Pier in Huntington Beach through the year: Contest 1: April 25-29; Contest 2: September 20-26; Contest 3: October 31-November 7.

The Association of Surfing Professionals is the primary organization for pro surfing and for the past few years has geared much attention in ensuring the top 32 guys – surfers such as Kelly Slater, Taj Burrow, and HB’s Brett Simpson – are taken care of, Waring said. The US Open of Surfing, which once allowed 200 up-and-coming surfers to enter, are only accessible to top-level athletes and leave few slots for mid-ranked competitors to prove themselves.

The only event that allows the mid-ranked pro surfers to compete is the Vans Pier Classic, an ASP 4-star being held in Huntington Beach later this month, March 28 – April 1, 2012.

But with the advent of the new series, we can now watch our mid-tier competitors show off their stuff, harkening back to a time when the homegrown surf series reigned supreme in the US.

“The APSS is a great opportunity for young pros and amateurs to compete in their own country, have some fun, and display some progressive surfing. I expect to see a big turnout of talented amateurs, young pros, and proven legends all mixing it up in surfing’s version of Times Square, Huntington Beach. We’ll be displaying a live webcast so if you can’t come down to the beach, you can catch all the action from your home.” says Waring.

For more information on this latest series, go to http://www.americanprosurfingseries.com/info/event-info/.

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Surf photographers are invited to submit their applications to the Follow the Light Foundation (FTLF) for its annual $5,000 grant in honor of the late Larry “Flame” Moore. Entries must be received no later than Friday, April, 13, 2012.

Now in its seventh year, the FTLF recognizes photographers on the rise and helps fuel their vision. The FTLF was founded after Moore’s passing to help finance the dreams of up-and-coming surf photographers, and push the sport and its lensmen forward. Flame, a legendary Photo Editor of SURFING Magazine for more than three decades, made it a priority to teach and inspire anyone with a passion for photography.

During this year’s submission process, photographers will edit their images and cue it to the music of their choice. The “visual presentations” of the Top 5 finalists will then be shown at an awards night at the Shorebreak Hotel during the US Open of Surfing on Tues, July 31.

The FTLF has helped propelled the careers of many talented photographers, including 2011 recipient Duncan McFarlane, who is now a staff photographer for SURFING Magazine, 2010 recipient Morgan Maassen, a SURFER staffer and is quickly becoming the surf world’s freshest eye, and 2007 winner Matt Clark, a professional photographer based in New York, specializing in fine art surf, travel and documentary photography. Additionally, former winners Chris Burkard, Todd Glaser and Ray Collins are three of the most prolific and talented photographers in the sport today, and they all give credit to Flame and FTLF for helping their dream job come true.

To submit an application, contact Peter Taras (peter@surfingmagazine.com) or Jeremiah Klein (miahklein@s7mg.com). Applicants must be present at awards ceremony in order to win.

The application along with rules and regulations can be found on the FTLF website.

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Clean water. We assume it’s a given every time we swim or surf. Unfortunately, due to the growth and development along our coasts (which hasn’t been sufficiently managed), we’re now encountering negative effects when pollution taints our beaches and coastal waters.

The largest source of beach pollution is storm water runoff. Instead of soaking into the ground, rain typically flows off of paved and city, residential and agricultural landscapes, picking up contaminants as it flows downstream through the watershed and into the ocean. Leaking and overflowing sewer pipes, septic systems and discharges from factories and waste water treatment plants also pollute coastal waters.

Thankfully, Surfrider’s Clean Water Program is helping to solve water pollution problems and to educate communities about the many benefits of responsible land and water management.

The Clean Water Program has 3 elements: The Blue Water Task Force (BWTF) is Surfrider’s volunteer water testing formula. This program is used to determine the condition of beach water and to raise community awareness of local water pollution problems. Ocean Friendly Gardens educates and assists people in taking action in commercial or public spaces, or their own yards to prevent pollution. The goal is to capture rainwater on-site before it can leave the property and carry pollutants to the ocean. Finally, Surfrider’s newest program, Know Your H2O (KYH2O) educates communities on how we mismanage and waste our precious water resources, and presents solutions for integrated land and water management.

For further details on the programs, go to Surfrider’s Clean Water Program page. But, if you want to do something right now, anyone that donates at least $10 until March 14th will receive a bundle of 5 stickers and a Surfrider koozie. Donate here on their Facebook Causes Page

It will get you in the spirit for World Water Day, which is March 22nd. Continue reading