Surfing Santa — Courtesy: Shutterstock — Image by: mikeledray
In Florida, Santa cast aside his reindeer and sleigh to kick off Christmas festivities with a surfboard.
The outstanding event happened at Cocoa Beach on Christmas Eve Friday, when hundreds of surfers threw on their best Santa costumes to celebrate the holiday and benefit local charities.
Surfing Santas is an annual Cocoa Beach tradition that invites hundreds of surfers of all ages to dress up as Santa, his elves, and his helpers. What started as a fun family outing in 2009 has grown to become an annual charity event that raises tens of thousands of dollars for local charities, all while drawing surfing and Christmas enthusiasts from around the world.
More than 10,000 spectators traveled to Florida’s Space Coast for the 12th annual Surfing Santas event and watched over 400 surfers show off their skills for a good cause.
Surfing Santa’s annual charity surf had to cancel its events last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but this year the Santas went all out with a six-city block venue at 3 Minutemen Causeway Beach.
Former New England Patriots quarterback Doug Flutie kicked off the event on Friday morning by hopping out of a helicopter into the Atlantic Ocean while wearing a Santa costume.
The rest of the day was filled with costume contests, Hawaiian dancers, space-themed treats, and a visit from Santa Claus. Winners of the costume contest won a 2-night hotel stay at the Country Inn & Suites in Port Canaveral along with a gift package and other fun prizes. Additionally, the grand prize winner gets a 2-night stay at the Hilton Cocoa Beach Oceanfront Hotel.
A media representative for Surfing Santas stated that the organization has raised over $62,000 from selling T-shirts & surf swag at the 2021 event—a record year for the organization. According to Surfing Santas’ event leaders, all proceeds from the Christmas Eve surf event will be donated to Florida-based charities.
The organization said it has raised more than $200,000 for two local nonprofits through eleven previous Surfing Santas events. The nonprofits include Grind for Life, a financial assistance program for cancer patients and their families when traveling long distances to hospitals, and the Florida Surf Museum, a surfing preservation society and exhibition. Both of the organizations are based out of Cocoa Beach.
Spectators and surfers who want to get involved with Surfing Santas can visit the organization’s website at SurfingSantas.org.
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Melissa’s career in writing started more than 20 years ago. Today, she lives in South Florida with her husband and two boys.