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Sharing the love of surfing


Local surfers travelled to Tokomaru Bay last weekend to run their first community surf experience of the year.

The trip was a collaboration between Gisborne Boardriders and Ngati Porou Boardriders to strengthen ties between the clubs and to share surfing.

Ngati Porou Boardriders president Haz McClutchie said the club jumped at any opportunity to get exposure for their up-and-coming surfers.

“Unfortunately for our tamariki and rangatahi, they don’t get the exposure that kids from Gisborne get. For us, it’s all about the kids.”

The event was a resounding success, with people coming to give surfing a go from across the East Coast, from Ruatoria to Mata School, which is 35 kilometres inland from Tokomaru Bay.

“It’s about bringing all different children together for a single purpose.”

Young surfer Tawhana Baker received a surfboard and wetsuit for his exceptional commitment.

Gisborne Boardriders president Dan Croskery said it was important to share the sport of surfing.

“A passion of mine is to make surfing more accessible. . . so everyone can experience the glide of surfing.

“Everyone managed to stand up and surf a wave. Seeing the smiles is priceless.”

He said that while the primary kaupapa of the trip was to share surfing, it was also an opportunity to learn more about Ngati Porou history and culture.

“It was a cultural experience, more so for some of our members who hadn’t experienced a marae stay.

“We want to strengthen our ties and share our love of surfing.”

Members from both clubs held an open surfing day on Saturday, with visitors staying at Tuatini Marae overnight before Sunday’s beach clean-up and a surf.

IF AT FIRST YOU DON’T SUCCEED: Gisborne Boardriders surfing development manager Flo Bub poses with Caleb Jane, who went surfing for the first time last weekend. After a few waves Caleb got smashed and didn’t want to go back out. His sisters Karina and Rihanna (also first-time surfers) and their mum Donna encouraged him. Eventually he went back out and couldn’t stop smiling. He loves surfing and wants to get a board for his birthday. The family, who live 35 kilometres inland from Tokomaru Bay, joined Gisborne and Ngati Porou boardriders’ clubs for a surf experience last weekend.
HONGI AND A HANDSHAKE: Tawhana Baker and Gisborne Boardriders Club surfing development manager Flo Bub hongi at the prize-giving. Tawhana received a surfboard and wetsuit for his exceptional commitment. Pictures by Dan Croskery