"This is our 5th year and we had more participants than ever before," said Megan. "Every surf camp was filled to capacity this summer. The weather and waves were almost perfect for the entire month." Davison said that one important key to the popularity of the program is the emphasis on campers having fun as well as learning how to surf. "We have a great group of laid back surf instructors who love being out surfing and teaching the kids."
While the campers are certainly physically challenged by this extreme sport, each surfer was allowed to progress at his or her own pace with no whistles, line-ups, or drills to deal with. "Our camp has no strict structure," said Megan. "And that is the reason why the kids come back week after week. What could possibly be better than surfing all day until you just can't paddle anymore? It is a total blast!"
All the surfers in the program got outfitted with wetsuits and surfboards and rode waves all morning. After a short lunch break, they went back out and surfed for the remainder of the afternoon. By the end of the four-day camp, everyone was up and riding waves.
It also helps that the South Kingstown surf camps are held at one of the best reef breaks on the East Coast, Matunuck Point. Camp organizers could choose from any of the five perfect cobblestone reef breaks to surf at each day. "One day we would surf at Deep Hole and the next day at Mary's Bar," said Megan. "We always shift our students to whatever break is the easiest to ride and with no one out surfing it. If one spot was breaking good and had a crowd, we would just take our group to one of the breaks that was not as good."
On the final day of each camp, a fun contest was held and everyone got prizes and brand new rash guards that they could keep. Prizes were donated by Narragansett Surf and Skate. Campers were separated in groups by ability level and age, and paddled out in individual heats. Camp instructors judged the surfers as they do in regular Eastern Surfing Association contests.
The staff of instructors included the following: Camp Leader- Megan Davison. Menehune and Minis - Sara Fraza and Mary Walton. Grommets and Gremlins- Tim Burnett, Kellen Winslow and Spencer Burke. Juniors- Zack White, Megan Davison, and Peter Pan. Adults- Peter Pan, Matt Fraza, and Conrad Ferla.
Certain individual campers who showed the most potential at becoming a dedicated surfer for life included the following: Avian Durfee, Jenna Pari, Madison West, Dante Caouette, Sophia Gallant, and Kendra McGurl-Smith. "They displayed a great attitude about the sport and stayed loose and under control in the bigger surf," said Megan.
The following is the results of the contests that were held over the four-week period: Week One Contest was held in 2-3 foot surf at Matunuck Point. Minis- 1.Andrew King 2.Violet Anderson 3.Mike McGovern 4.Kerrin Basco Menehunes- 1.Alice D'Arcangelo 2.Anna McCormick 3.Matt McGovern 4.Matt Mahoney Grommets- 1.Madison West 2.Alexandra Champlin 3.Kendra McGurl-Smith 4.Trevor Gebelein 5.Carlie Kwhos Gremlins- 1.Lea Skokowski 2.Tony Marino 3.Kathy Forrester Juniors-1.McGregor Graham 2.Mia Palombo 3.McKenna McCabe 4.Eric Wolfe 5.Patrick Lynch. Week Two Contest was held in 1-3 foot conditions at Deep Hole. Minis-1. Hayden Phillips 2.Lorenzo Capasso 3.Liam Gany 4.Garrett Hamilton Menehunes- 1.Tom Munkelwitz 2.Brandon Sticca 3.Jacob McConnell 4.Jacob D'Andrea Grommets- 1.Connor McGill 2.Hayden Furcolo 3.John Waddington 4.Adam Sticca Gremlins- 1.Andrew Binder 2.Morgan Richards 3.Jennika Mannestro 4.Tyler Keith Juniors- 1.Ethan Binder 2.Acacia Levin 3.Joe Gallucci 4.Ben Magarian. Week Three Contest was held in 1-3 foot surf at Trestles. Minis-1.Dante Caouette 2.Reyle Dineen 3.Aivan Durfee 4.Chris Harrington 5.Sophia Gallant Menehunes- 1.Nick Fazio 2.Zack Rameaka 3.Seamus Stepalvich 4.Caitlyn Bradley 5.Tom Dodez 6.Andy Murray Grommets- 1.Alex Keyes 2.Beibhinn Gallagher 3.Dylan Woodward 4.Jarod Majeika 5.Marisa Ford Gremlins- 1.Kyle Doremus 2.Sara Dacey 3.Lucas Harrington 4.Amanda Trainor 5.Jack Donegan Juniors- 1.Jenna Pari 2.Jason Young 3.Michelle Asels 4.Ian McDonnell 5.Lauren Abbenante. Week Four Contest was held in 1-2 foot surf at Matunuck Point. Minis- 1.Mike Hutchings 2.Lorenzo Capasso 3.Cooper Stearns 4.Molly Morrians Menehunes- 1.McGregor Graham 2.Sophia Yescott 3.Bill Ashley 4.Beibhinn Gallagher 5.Joe Piacitelli Grommets- 1.Nat Rasmussen 2.Marco Capasso 3.Grace Lynn 4.Harrison Green Gremlins- 1.Chole Yescott 2.Jane Gudway 3.Frank Watson 4.Ally Marrinan 5.Samantha Gear Juniors- 1.RJ Barton 2.Amanda Fontana 3.Sara Fontana 4.Kara Wheeler 5.Dylan Woodward.