The SWELL team is out on Oahu’s North Shore to bring you the exciting events in the epicenter of surf world. The first part of our “7 Days on 7 Mile Miracle” series features the Surfrider’s 9th Annual John Kelly Environmental Awards.
The ceremony and silent auction went down in the Waimea Valley Pavilion, and the whole north shore community joined in to celebrate those responsible for protecting the coastal environment. Attendees enjoyed a surprise performance by Jack Johnson, performing original songs about the harms of single-use plastic, holiday remixes, and his best selling hits.
Mark Cunningham, Peter Cole , and other legends recounted decades of hard fought battles to “keep the country, country” and they awarded these supporters for maintaining an uncompromising defense of the coast. Do your part showing support with iconic Surfrider apparel here.
Lifetime Achievemnt Award: Cora Sanchez is the co-founder of the Oahu Chapter, and leads the ongoing fight against development. She also made huge strides in ridding North Shore beaches of plastics deposited by oceanic gyres from all over the world.
Environmentally Friendly Hawai‘i-Based Company Award: The Kona Brewing Company promotes sustainable practices at all their facilities and is a long time supporter of Surfrider. The company helps organize the Kona Brewers Festival, which raises money for educational, environmental and cultural organizations. The State of Hawaii holds high eco-standards, and Kona leads the charge by using recycled building materials and installing solar panels at their facilities.
Professional Surfer Award: Kyle Thiermann created a five-part video series, Surfing for Change, to encourage individuals to change their life habits to help save the environment. Kyle’s video “Where Is Away? Solving Plastic Pollution in 4 Minutes” shows how wasteful and destructive single-use plastics are to the marine environment and encourages people to bring their own reusable bags and bottles.