North Shore nonprofit Friends of Sunset Beach will be recognized for its efforts to support the arts program at Sunset Beach Elementary School and the surrounding community when the annual Surfer Poll Awards returns to Turtle Bay Resort.
Presented by Surfer Magazine, the Surfer Poll honors the top 10 male and female surfers of the year based on an online vote. Now in its 46th year, the event expanded in the 1990s to recognize surf filmmakers and also presents awards in the following categories:
>> Agent of Change
>> Best Barrel
>> Best Cinematography
>> Best Performance
>> Best Short Film (less than 20 minutes in length)
>> Breakthrough Performer
>> Heavy Water (“awarded for excellence/craziness in big-wave charging”)
>> Movie of the Year
>> Worst Wipeout
As this year’s recipient of the Agent of Change award, Friends of Sunset Beach will directly benefit from the event via sales of VIP tables that are expected to raise $10,000 for the organization.
“Thanks to Friends of Sunset Beach, students at Sunset Beach Elementary will be able to discover their creative passions,” Surfer Editor Todd Prodanovich said in a news release announcing this year’s award. “One day we hope to see one of these students up on stage accepting their own Surfer Award.”
According to Friends of Sunset Beach President Cathy Shanley, the volunteer-based group will use the award money to help produce its annual Celebrating the Arts fundraiser. Previous winners include the North Shore Community Land Trust, Sustainable Surf, Hawai‘i SEED, Paddle2Live, Operation Amped and the Mauli Ola Foundation.
The 2016 Surfer Poll Awards will take place at 7 p.m. Dec. 6 at Turtle Bay Resort and will be broadcast live online at surferawards.com.