Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

{Nursery of Champions } {Sustaining Our Region's Surfing Heritage }; Surfabout Program Teaches Vital Water Skills and Shows That Region's Surfing Heritage Will Survive

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

{Nursery of Champions } {Sustaining Our Region's Surfing Heritage }; Surfabout Program Teaches Vital Water Skills and Shows That Region's Surfing Heritage Will Survive

Article excerpt

Byline: Bill Hoffman

THE two-day Caloundra RSL Surfabout, presented by the Sunshine Coast Daily, has proven a winner for participation and learning over elite competition.

While the event had a competition aspect, it was the level of participation and the quality of the movie-making by media units from at least seven schools that impressed organiser Michael Poncini from host school Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Primary at Moffat Beach.

Mr Poncini said the Currimundi Special School, adjacent to the Ann Street venue for the event, was also a winner and could expect at least $1000 in donations from beachside shops run by students over the two days.

"The model is working," he said.

"Our only hassle is that there are more kids wanting to take part than there are spaces for them in a two-day event.

"Creating an environment where kids can have fun and learn works better than an elitist model."

Movies shot during the two-day event, and edited in a computer lab on-site, would be posted on the event's website and also be shown on the big screen at the Caloundra RSL.

The event was held in small but clean conditions at Dicky Beach, drawing a total of 123 surfers from 11 schools across the Sunshine Coast, contesting six age divisions.

The conditions allowed competitors to use their full range of skills and demonstrated that the strong surfing heritage of the region would be sustained.

The champion team title went to Sunshine Beach State School by just 1.4 points from Saint Andrews Anglican College, with Coolum State School third.

Kirra Green from Coolum won the hotly contested open boys' division from Matthew Flinders' Kai Hing.

Annie Palmer won the open girls from Laura Eden of Sunshine Beach, the under-11 girls' title went to Laura Poncini of Our Lady of the Rosary, the boys' under-11 to Quinn Bruce from Sunshine Beach, the under-10 girls' to Polly Poncini (OLR) and the under-10 boys to Reef Heazlewood of Caloundra Christian College. …

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