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RICO JIMENEZ CJ KANUHA GROM CAMP
Ulu Napeahi Photo: Mike Latronic
BarnďŹ elds, Turtle Bay and HIC
F R E E
P A R K I N G
A wide open perspective is always a great place to start. Kamalei Alexander enjoys the view during a blissful late winterâ€™s day at backdoor. Photo: Tony Heff
r e n n Ta l e i n a McD
06 Free Parking 12 Publisherâ€™s Note 16 Rewind 18 By the Numbers 20 Giving 22 Grom Camp 20 Memoriam 56 Surf Art 60 Environment 64 Industry Notes
treat your team right
new Smoothies to-go pack walk in or order online at jambajuicehawaii.com/catering jambahawaii.com
photo by Mark mcdaniel
66 Last Look
T A B L E
C O N T E N T S
D E P A R T M E N T S
F E A T U R E S
Kirk Lee Aeder
CULTURALLY SPEAKING / CJ KANUHA
TALK STORY / RICO JIMINEZ
PUBLISHERS’S NOTE By Mike Latronic
There’s a proverb that states, “No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow.” Embrace the change of seasons as a simple truth. We can always hope for one more huge North-west swell, one last dry barrel at Vland or a super fun filled day taking off deep Rockies and riding 100 yards all the way across the point… But savor it. The seasons will change. The one universal law is that all things evolve. And so it begins that our island weather, wind and waves will see a change into springtime. Calmer, cleaner conditions often greet our coasts in April so the good news is that if we do get some solid spring surf action, chances are it will be glorious for all you fellow surfers.
Freesurf catches up with two unique personalities as well. CJ Kanuha is probably the lightest skinned Hawaiians I know, but being half Polynesian, the native blood pulses through his veins and his heart with passion, energy and aloha that we are so very lucky to share with you. Ito also brings us this look at CJ Kanuha. Another character, Rico Jimenez has a prolific story. Rico has been a fixture at big Pipeline for decades taking extreme chances getting extreme tubes rides but also enduring some extreme spills and his life experience is just as colorful and inspirational. Nephew Chris Latronic catches up with Rico for a uplifting and enlightening look. There’s various news, useful and useless tidbits, notes, images and yarns. The imagery is always a winner. Enjoy.
This issue prepares a medley of Spring treats and one story we did touches on the formal grom assault known as Billabong Bloodlines. Spring is nature’s way of saying, "Let’s party!" says the late great comedian Robin Williams and you can be sure the three different “youth camps” of Bloodlines enjoyed this outlook while honing their skills on Oahu’s North Shore for a month.
Inside we touch on the passing of a great waterman and ambassador of surfing - George Downing. Former Freesurf Editor Daniel “Ikaika” Ito delivers a short aloha to the great man but you can bet we will follow up with a full biography of George’s fantastic yet humble journey in a future edition this summer.
Redefining Performance HIC Surfboards by Kerry Tokoro M7 MODEL Kerry Tokoro’s M7 model, is the perfect go-to board for those days when the waves get too big or powerful for your everyday shortboard. The clean lines, sophisticated bottom contours and rounded pintail design combine to make this boa fast and loose, yet solid and stable. board Extra foam under the chest area helps the M7 paddle and catch waves easily, and maintain its speed through flat sections. The continuous curve of the outline draws smooth lines across the wave face and holds tight through hard gauging turns. bot The M7’s bottom features a fair amount of rocker with a mix of single to double concave flowing to a slight vee off of the tail. This allows the board to fit into steep sections of the wave and keeps it feeling loose and maneuverable. The M7 is a favorite in the quivers of HIC Teamriders Joel Centeio, Josh Moniz and Kainehe (pictu Hunt (pictured). Josh recently rode his 6’8” to victory in the 2018 Volcom Pipe Pro, claiming the board performed like “magic”! If you’re looking for a step-up design that won’t sacrifice your performance in bigger waves, the M7 is the right board for you. ADVANCED COMPOSITE MATRIX
HIC’s ADVANCED COMPOSITE MATRIX (ACM) combines the best qualities of three different fiberglass fabrics - E-Glass, S-Glass and Warp Glass - creating a surfboard that is lighter and more resistant to compression, buckling and breaking. s All stock HIC boards are now glassed with the ACM system in combinations of 4 oz. and 6 oz. fiberglass, depending on the length of the board. Look for the ACM logo to be sure.
Pipeline. Photo: Keoki/Freesurf
M7 Model by Kerry Tokoro: 6’6” X 19.06” X 2.4” Ala Moana Center Street Level, Mauka
Publisher Mike Latronic Managing Editor / Photo Editor Tony Heff Art Director John Weaver Multimedia Director Tyler Rock Ambassador-at-Large Chris Latronic
CULTURED V 1 5
CJ KANUHA RICO JIMINEZ APERTURE
Copy Editor Mara Pyzel
Ulu Napeahi Photo: Mike Latronic
West Coast Distribution Kurt Steinmetz East Coast Distribution Eastern Surf Supply Hawaii Distribution Jason Clifford Staff Photographers Tony Heff, Chris Latronic, Mike Latronic, Tyler Rock, Keoki Saguibo Free Thinkers Kyveli Diener, Tiffany Hervey, Kahi Pacarro, Shannon Reporting Interns Aukai Ng , Shannon Cavarocchi
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PARTY STARTING TECHNOLOGY THE
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3/9/18 1:32 PM
In case you missed it, here are a few of the top stories in the surfing community in the past month.
HAWAIIAN COMPETITORS SHINE IN EARLY 2018 EVENTS Hawaiian upstarts proved their staying power as the 2018 Qualifying Series and World Longboard Tour kicked off in February and March. The 2017 World Champion and North Shore O‘ahu native Honolua Blomfield continued her competitive domination with her first victory at the Australian Longboard Surfing Open in Kingscliff, while Championship Tour competitor Malia Manuel of Kauai took second place in the final at the Sydney Surf Pro Qualifying Series 6,000 at Manly Beach. Meanwhile, at the Rangiroa Pro in Tahiti, Sheldon Paishon of Makaha garnered his first WSL contest victory by taking top spot at the contest beating out close friend and Big Island native Mikey “Redd” O’Shaughnessy.
PAIGE ALMS AND BILLY KEMPER CLAIM BIG WAVE WORLD TITLES
Unique, Handcrafted Bikinis Proving that Maui-built men and women are the ones to beat on waves of consequence, Haiku natives Paige Alms and Billy Kemper both rose to the top as the 2017/2018 Big Wave World Champions. Both Kemper and Alms are two-time Pe’ahi Challenge winners at their home break on Maui and this is Paige’s second career World Title. Kemper’s runner-up finish at the Nazaré Challenge in Portugal in February nudged him ahead of fellow Maui boy Kai Lenny to secure his first Big Wave World Title.
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HYPERFREAK BOARDSHORTS AVAILABLE AT HI-TECH SHOPS
ELI O LSO N
T H E
N U M B E R S
By Mike Chlala The City and County Lifeguards are an integral part of surfing’s past, present, and future. Their protection of our world famous lineups have undoubtedly influenced the progression of our sport allowing surfers to push the limits of wave riding by protecting and also educating them on a regular basis, not to mention showing most of us how it’s done out there. From May 2, 1917 when The Territory of Hawai’i passed Act 201 officially established a life-saving patrol for Waikiki Beach and had a team of two lifeguards, to today, where the North Shore Lifeguarding district spans almost 60 miles of coastline from Ka‘ena Point to Kualoa with three lieutenants and two jet ski units and more than 450 lifeguards statewide. Ocean Safety and Lifeguard Services’ mission is to act as the primary responder for emergencies on the beaches and in the nearshore waters for the island of O‘ahu. The term “nearshore” refers to anything up to 1 mile offshore.
Between 2008 and 2013 there were 1,136 non-fatal drownings in Hawai‘i. 89 percent (1,014) of those survived and were released after receiving further medical care.
There are around 40 full time North Shore Lifeguards and about five contract hires. There are 8 towers on the North Shore, including the Kualoa tower, which is only open on weekends and holidays. During the winter hours most are 3 man towers and in the summer they go down to 2 man.
After his horrific wipeout and rescue, Maui’s Dusty Payne has an ongoing GoFundMe account into which all of us can donate, to raise money that goes straight to the North Shore Lifeguard Association. They are in the process of meeting a $25,000 goal and hopefully more. Like the fundraiser says, “Let’s pay it forward.”
Towers are open daily from 9:00am to 5:30pm. However, on duty or not at the beach, these lifeguards are still aware of what’s going on in case they need to do a rescue regardless of if they’re on the clock or not. There are efforts to try and extend these hours and hire more guards.
From keeping ourselves, our loved ones, and our visitors safe to educating everyone about ocean safety and putting in tremendous efforts to the education of the new generation with their Jr. Lifeguard program, we owe the brave lifeguards a large debt of gratitude. Though faced with adversity from many angles, their passion for the ocean and keeping it safe remains.
In 2016, visitors spent about $7.3 billion on O‘ahu! In 2014, O‘ahu tower lifeguards logged around 1.4 million public contacts and about 900,000 preventive actions! On O‘ahu between 2005 and 2014, despite their efforts, there were 273 drownings with the percentage of visitors being slightly higher than residents. This past year the North Shore Lifeguard Association was given $5,000 for the “Agent of Change” Award at the 2017 Surfer Poll Awards.
THE CITY & COUNTY LIFEGUARDS
THU R S DAY
- “ WAV E O F T H E W I N T E R ” T H E M O V I E -
- LIVE PERFORMANCE BY: OOKLAH THE MOC - 1 34 9 K A PI O L A N I BLV D # 3 0 , H O NO LU LU, HI 9 6 8 14 JOI NTHE RE P U B L I K .COM T I C KE TS - $ 1 0
C H A R I T I E S
L I K E
Mauli Ola By Keoki
Living in Hawaii, we are surrounded by the vast Pacific Ocean. Whether you head in any direction from the islands, you are bound for miles of endless horizon and salt water. When your born with a genetic disorder that causes general malnutrition and chronic respiratory infections, the ocean, especially in Hawaii could feel like a trap. But what brothers James and Charles Dunlop did through their continuous work at Ambry Genetics, a company that Charles founded to bridge the gap between science and commercial interest, also being surfers themselves, the Maui Ola Foundation was started. A foundation to help people with Cystic Fibrosis and other genetic disorders by using the natural properties of the ocean to cope with the disease and encourage confidence with patients. Maui Ola foundation was founded in 2007 by the Dunlop brothers in Southern California who reached out to the surfing community in Hawaii. In 2007, the first one-on-one lesson was held in 2007 in Newport Beach, California with pro surfer Jamie O’Brien and others was a huge success. Due to the positive feedback from patients and the surf community, the Dunlop brothers headed to Hawaii to team up with waterman and pro surfers alike to grow their vision with respected waterman and surfers. With the guidance of Mick O’ Brien, Eddie Rothman, Kala Alexander, and Tom Stone, the vision came true and in 2008 Maui Ola was founded. Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disease that infects mostly the lungs but have known to infect the liver, pancreas, kidneys, and intestines. The disease is mostly found in children in which 1 in 3,000 carry the disease through 20
genetics but affecting one out of 25 children in developed countries. The disease causes difficulty breathing which come from lung infections producing thick mucus that inhibit breathing, poor growth, chest infections, poor nutrition intake, and general poor overall health caused by the disease. There are no known cures for Cystic Fibrosis were only antibiotics are given through inhaling, intravenous, or by mouth and lung transplants in both lungs if the disease worsens. The closest cure or remedy the disease has seen is very expensive which can costs doctors up to $300,000 per year. The ocean itself has saline properties that has helped coped with disease throughout history and Cystic Fibrosis is another candidate. The Maui Ola foundation has teamed up with respectable surfers from around the globe to help with the coping and treatment of the disease by getting patients in the ocean through surfing. Surfers like Ulu Napeahi, Gavin Beschen, Kala Alexander, Jason Magallanes, Jamie O’Brien, just to name a few, all donate their time to help cope patients with the disease. The sport of surfing takes the patient's mind away from the hurtful disease by riding waves and helps them
physically by breathing in the oceans natural saline. The Maui Ola foundation has surf clinics that take place around the coasts of the United States as well as in the South Pacific. The first surf experience to kick off the 2018 tour starts in Waikiki Beach, HAwaii on April 28, 2018. Other events that involves Maui Ola are benefits concerts, silent auctions, and a golf tournament fundraiser all in which help to fund the Maui Ola foundation. Another campaign brought on by Ambry Genetics is the Battle for Breasts in which the top 16 World Surf League womens surfers battle each other to raise awareness for breast cancer. With the help of Surfline, Battle for Breast raised up to $100,000 in 2014 for diagnostic testing in which Ambry Genetics donated the funds to directly towards breast cancer clinics. When dealing with a genetic disorder, especially in kids, some of the first things that come to mind is how are we going to fund this treatment. Cystic fibrosis is no laughing matter and the struggle for normalcy while being a kid dealing with this disorder can be overwhelming. Thank you to Maui Ola and all that are involved who helped find a way to deal with this disorder, not only through medical research but the best natural doctor that doesn’t cost anything, the ocean.
Billabong Bloodlines’ 30 day invasion of the North Shore Keoki
By Tony Heff
It’s pretty much a no-brainer for companies like Billabong, Volcom, and Quiksilver, who already have beachfront property at Pipeline, to send their young, up-and-coming talent to dwell and log some serious time in Hawaiian waters. One camp that Freesurf mag’s photo and video crew has worked with since it began, is Billabong Bloodlines. Billabong sends three elite international squads, all for ten days each, to post-up at their beach house directly in front of Off The Wall. Throw in legends like Shane Dorian, (and in years past) Taj Burrow, Mark Occhilupo, and Donavon Frankenreiter, along with Coach Rainos Hayes, and you have the epitome of grom camp heaven. With moms, dads, and Billabong house manager Micah Moniz keeping them fed, the kids have the O‘ahu coastline as their playground. The Bloodlines camp has been so successful that it’s been running for eight years straight and has broadened to locations like Japan, Indo, South Africa and Tahiti, to name a few. But it’s not all fun and games; Coaches and team captains take this time to pass along some serious wisdom that can better the groms’ surfing and help them when faced with the pressures of contests.
If you surf on the North Shore in late winter, the chance of a pack of groms descending upon your surf spot is high. Maybe it’s the lull in surf contests at that time of year; With less-crowded lineups it is easier for kids to get photo and video exposure along with an invaluable amount of experience at breaks like Pipe, Sunset, and Haleiwa all waves that will inevitably define the future of their young surf careers. Yeah... that’s probably why.
They run drills, mock heats, and work on their physical fitness regimen, as well as pull their weight in chores and most importantly, practice respect. Coach Rainos says, “The program also shares learning about Hawai’i’s culture and etiquette so the kids have a healthy respect and responsibility when they come here.” Bloodlines mentor Shane Dorian states, “The days and weeks these kids build up over the years of being in the Bloodlines program are a huge building block for them. Holding relationships with North Shore spots from a young age is a huge advantage.
Besides that, these kids are learning to get along with the other kids, making lifelong friends and just have a lot of fun while they are here.” We got the scoop from four of the 24 groms attending the camp this year, each one hailing from a different Hawaiian island: Brodi Sale from Big Island, Ocean Macedo of Maui, Kai Martin of O’ahu, and Sammy Gray from Kaua’i.
BRODI My name is Brodi Sale, I am from Kailua Kona Hawaii and I am 15 years old. I’ve been coming to the bloodlines camps for 8 years now. My favorite spots we surfed is the zone between off the wall and pipe. We pretty much stayed there the whole time.
Rainos has coached me through every event I’ve been in since I was 8 years old! Always appreciate not only how much hard work he does for Billabong but for helping to make our sport as elite as possible. Can't thank these guys enough for everything they have done for me.
To me Billabong Bloodlines is about building relationships with the waves and the different kids from around the world. Also to push your surfing to the next level by surfing with some of the best kids in the world. The Billabong house has to be one of the sickest houses on the North Shore! It's so sick being able to wake up to some of the best waves in the world. I’m always so grateful to be able to stay at the Billabong house! I would not be where I am today in my surfing career without the help of Shane (Dorian) and Rain Dog (Rainos Hayes). When I am at home Shane videos me and does little mock heats to get me ready for all my comps. I feel very fortunate to be able to soak up every bit of knowledge he has.
OCEAN My name is Ocean Macedo and I’m 15 years old. I was born and raised west side of Maui. This was my 3rd year coming to the Billabong Bloodlines. The camp brings Billabong’s best kids together to the north shore of Oahu and surf as much as they possibly can on surfing’s proving grounds: Pipeline, Sunset, and Haleiwa. We stay right at the billabong house and get a front row seat to all action happening at pipe, backdoor, and off the wall. I was really excited to work with some of my mentors these past few years such as Shane Dorian, Occy as well as Billabongs Hawaiian coach and manager Rainos Hayes.
This year for camp champ was completely different. Usually the coaches just pick the camp champ. This year was very cool, instead they made us vote for every kid in the camp for different categories. (Best Style, Best Barrel, Worst at doing chores, etc) So the way the judging worked is if you got top 3 in the bad awards then you got minus points but if you got top 3 awards in the good awards then you got positive points.
This year was a little different because there were awards given out at the end which determined who was the most favored during the camp or “camp champ” as well as the person who was less favored. Sammy Grey took the award for complaining the most, but I thought it should have went to Brodi Sale hahahaha. But Sammy was definitely the funniest, he was the biggest character out of the entire crew. Camp Champ went to Jai Gilndeman. He all around ripped, did his chores, and didn’t complain. He won a free acai bowl.
I thought this new way of voting for camp champ was very cool and wouldn't mind doing it the same way next year. The first couple days of the camp were some of the dreamiest backdoor days I have ever seen. It was pretty much firing all day for 2 days straight with sunny offshore winds. Then after those couple days the waves went flat. We made the most out of the small days by going to Waikiki, Waimea jump Rock, etc. We also played a lot of poker. Let's just say I lost more money then I made hahaha. It was really cool to see a lot of kids from a whole bunch of different countries. We had 3 Aussies, 1 South African, 1 French, 1 American, and 3 Hawaiians. Out of all the billabong bloodlines I have been to this one was the best group of kids as far as really getting along with each other. My favorite things about this year’s camp was the food that uncle Micah and the Moms cook, meeting new kids and making friends and surfing good waves!
My favorite part of the camp was definitely spending time with some other billabong kids from around the world and spending that amount of time on the north shore.
Not at work? Keep Up the good work.
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One life, right? Don’t blow it. Mahalo for drinking responsibly.
G R O M
C A M P
SAMMY My name is Sammy Gray, I’m from 15 years old and am from the Island of Kauai. I believe this is my fifth year coming to the Bloodlines camp. My top 3 places I got to surf this trip are Pipe, Ehukai Sandbar, and Off The Wall. When we come to Hawaii for Bloodlines, we stay in the dungeon. Which is basically the bunk house below the Billabong house, located right at Off The Wall. Rainos is the main coach every year,but he was in Australia for a couple QS comps, so it was sick to have Shane Dorian with us this year. This year they had a “camp champ” and it was decided through the votes of six categories. Camp champ this year went to Jai Gilndeman from Oz. My favorite things about the camp are surfing backdoor, meeting new people, and staying right in front of Off The Wall. Can’t wait for next year!
C A M P
G R O M
KAI My name is Kai Martin I am 13 years old and I am from Honolulu, HI. The bloodlines camp is really special, you get the opportunity to surf a lot and meet new kids from all over the world. What made this year different was that I was the older one in the camp so I was kind of an uncle to everyone haha. There were kids from all over... Australia, California, Portugal, and even Japan. We stayed at the Billabong house right in front of Off the Wall. The best thing about staying there is just being able to wake up and go surf literally within 5 minutes. My favorite spots were probably out front at pipe/ backdoor and also Off the Wall. Lennix Smith was camp champ this year. I think because he was consistently ripping the whole trip. The camp champ is judged on best style, best barrel, hardest charger, funnest person, and best to travel with. Having Rainos and Shane there just helps you to push yourself and surf your best. They also give really good advice for technique and other stuff. My favorite part was watching scary movies every night with everyone. That kinda freaked us out haha.
Definitely canâ€™t wait til next year.
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M E M O R I A M
George Downing 1937-2018 By Daniel Ikaika Ito George Downing showed us where to paddle out, literally and figuratively. He was a surfer’s surfer, displaying the complete skill set of a waterman coupled with an extensive database of ocean observation and analysis. Downing’s life work as a big wave surfer, canoe paddler, surfboard designer, environmentalist, entrepreneur, contest director and mentor paved the way for many of us. A lasting legacy is like a good nickname, it’s not something that you can set out to achieve. Rather it’s given to you by a community when they reminisce of your actions and achievements throughout your life. From creating the first removable fin on a surfboard to the Big Wave Invitational In Memory of Eddie Aikau, there are numerous innovations Downing is responsible for. Perhaps though, the part of his legacy that is sometimes overlooked is his stewardship of the ocean as one of the early members of Save Our Surf. George Downing never set out to leave a lasting legacy. Yet the pursuit of his passions made him one, but our aloha for him as a leader, activist, coach, father and grandfather make him a legend. He is survived by his three children, five grandchildren and two great grandchildren.
KA -1 5S -H 2
KALA UKULELE ARE AVAILABLE IN SURF SHOPS AND MUSIC STORES COAST TO COAST.
A L L Y C U L T U R
N G S P E A K I
A H U BE N O T A E K IV R J T S C D L HOU PA-HAOLE WE S IS THE HA By Daniel Ikaika
Photos Kirk Lee
e other the past, and th firmly planted in ot fo e d on an s t ha ar Hawaiian, n from Kona ern, Haole and Native Hawaiia od e m Th d ty. an ukulele l ali na an du g tio es in ys, strummin posites: tradi CJ Kanuha thriv e one of the bo e balance of op lik th se is ui He cr . n re ca tu o e fu g city. surfer wh stepping into th society in the bi a professional r-echelon of high d humility. CJ is pe an n up e tio bi th th am wi e, s er scienc , or rub should an tree in Kona under the Bany
“CJ is a very good example of a fashionable dude that can go to New York and hang out and also comeback to Kona and build an imu (an underground oven),” says filmmaker and Big Island native, Chad Campbell. “He can span those two worlds of a young, cool person in this society, he can go and throw net and he can hang with supermodels in Spain.” Like his fashion sense, Kanuha’s surfing is equally adaptable. His homebreak is Banyans and he grew up idolizing the Momentum Generation’s Big Island representatives, Conan Hayes and Shane Dorian. According to Dorian, who watched CJ go from grommet to gorilla, the lanky hapa haole still has the surf stoke of a kid. “CJ Kanuha is a frothy surfer, he’s real excited to surf kind of like a grom,” says Dorian. “He’s like a man-child, a classic, big character full of aloha and he’s really friendly.” CJ can ride a 5’10” thruster, blow the tail, get barreled and blast a giant air on the closeout section. His surfing is in the forefront of high performance in 2012, yet he can paddle out a 100-plus pound, 21-foot
olo and masterfully slide the traditional Hawaiian surfboard in like it was 1712. “It’s like trying to control a car with no power steering, old school, and your breaks are shot, you’re down to the pedal, pumping ‘em, going down a steep hill: That’s what an olo boards like,” says Kanuha about surfing a finless, wooden traditional papa he’enalu (surfboard) versus a contemporary, polyurethane thruster.“Riding a short board’s like putting your pedal to the metal and jumping in your frickin’ Ferrari, and doing 180s around corners with frickin’ doughnuts all in one turn.”
Kanuha’s “Ferraris” are modern shortboards shaped by Doc Lausch under the Surf Prescriptions brand. While the traditional Hawaiian boards are CJ’s creations under his Kanuha Hawaiian Surfboards label. When he was 12 he learned to woodworking from his great grandfather and uncles who started the Kai Opua Canoe Club in Kona and built outrigger canoes. Professor Tom Pohaku Stone helped refine CJ’s skills and taught the young Hawaiian about traditional Hawaiian board design and building.
“It’s one of those things with any true Hawaiians there is protocol for everything. If you’re going to go fish, if you’re going to go take a tree from the land, you ask permission,” says Kanuha. “To Hawaiians everything was a living thing. To me having a small pule or asking permission was the main thing that I was taught.” As the eldest son of full-blooded Native Hawaiian father and Caucasian mother originally from Texas, CJ epitomizes the term hapahaole. “Hapahaole is a blond Hawaiian like me,” explains Kanuha, “for me growing up, I don’t know if it was one of those things that made me stronger or what. I was born around really rough, rugged cousins and loving people so they formed me to be a strong individual.” “[CJ Kanuha] has a gift for bringing people together,” says Dorian. “He seems to have a really good instinct for what’s right and how to do things right the first time. I think in the future I could see him taking on a more important role in the community. He’s always there to help […] it doesn’t matter what it is he’s always there for me even though he’s so busy.”
“For me I want to keep everything traditional and keep it roots,” explains Kanuha, whose family are descended from the ali’i (chiefs). “There aren’t any other professional surfers, let alone young professional surfers my age that shape those kind of boards and are riding them.” Kanuha’s client list reads like The Forbes 400. Paul Allen, Michael Dell, Bill Gates, Louis Vutton and Kelly Slater all bought boards from CJ. When asked about the cost of a Kanuha Hawaiian Surfboard, he stays pretty vague, but admits that one papa he‘enalu costs roughly the same amount as a brand new Toyota Tacoma. In addition to his highclass customers, CJ has also donated boards to different charities like the Mauli Ola Foundation, SIMA Waterman’s Ball, Ryan Sheckler Foundation, Tony Hawk Foundation and more. According to Kanuha, it’s illegal to cut down a Koa tree, and he receives a phone call from friends when a fallen Koa tree is found. He is then allowed to take some of the lumber for board construction, but not before traditional Hawaiian protocol, which he learned from his family and late-father, Clement Keli‘ipo‘aimoku Kanuha Jr. Before CJ begins building a board, he will go to the wherever the log is with some ocean water, pour it onto the wood, say a prayer and ask it for permission.
The willingness to assist a friend or loved one, the power to unite people and the enthusiasm to educate the youth can be summed up in one word: Aloha. CJ Kanuha is truly an ambassador of this Hawaiian sentiment. Whether it is through CJ’s surfing, board building, cultural practices, artwork, entrepreneurial endeavors or shine in the lime light Aloha is at his core. He’ll never sacrifice who he is to accommodate a new opportunity, but will be able to transition between two worlds with ease because CJ always knows who he is. “Hawaiians were always the coolest and nicest people to be around so you always represent with positivity and never be negative, but I’m not going to be fake,” explains Kanuha,” “Respect is one of the key things that you give everybody till they lose it.”
Eli Olson Photo: Tony Heff
Kekoa Bacalso Photo: Keoki 38
Kelia Moniz Photo: Tony Heff
Ezekiel Lau Photo: Tony Heff
TA L K S T O RY A DARK ROOM
FULL OF LIGHT
RICO JIMENEZ By Chris Latronic
You never know what life will throw at you, and life throws a lotâ€Ś To Rico Jimenez, those hits took him down a road that he (and most) donâ€™t foresee or experience. A road where freedoms are stripped from your life and forcing you into a dark corner, both physically and mentally. Some dwell deeper into the darkness while few turn to the light, transitioning their life towards a more righteous path. Now living in Honolulu, Rico has persevered through negative adversity and is now using every fiber in his life to progress towards a positive future.
Chris: Can I get your full name, age, and where you were born and raised? Rico: My full name is Rico Miguel Kainalu Castillo Jimenez, I’m 38 years old. I was born in Lihue, Kauai. Chris: Tell me about your origins in Kauai; Tell me about being born there in super early days, your family, mom and dad. Rico: I was originally born in Hanalei. We later, very early on, moved to Kapa’a. I was a little closer to my mom’s family. My mom has seven sisters, so I have 16 cousins or something on Kauai. She had a big family. I guess you can call Kealia, my home break. It wasn’t something to be proud of back then, it was kind of a crappy beach break, but I guess nowadays, the kids now love it and use it for training. Chris: What were your first experiences with surfing? Who taught you? Rico: So my dad, Don Jimenez was an old school Hanalei surfer. My name, Kainalu, means ‘ocean wave’. He very much wanted a son who surfed, so surfing was introduced to me pretty early on. I think the first wave I actually caught and stood up on would be Hanalei Pier and I think [for] a lot of kids from Kauai, especially the North Shore, that is their first wave. Chris: Do you remember your 1st waves? Rico: I think I was too young to remember. I knew from pictures and my mom and dad telling me that’s where I surfed. But you know, growing up, I didn’t like surfing. My dad pushed it on me. Not really
soccer-dad-kine, he wasn’t too much into contests, but really wanted me to be a surfer as a kid. You kinda go the opposite way of where your parents try to take you. Whatever he wanted me to do, surf, whatever, give me a surfboard, I was like, ‘I ain’t going surfing.’ And probably at about 6th or 7th grade, I started hanging out with some kids. My friend Travis Souza and Billy Butler, they all surfed and boogie-boarded. I started boogieboarding actually, when I was in about 6th or 7th grade. Then I met Derek Lyons Wolfe, and he surfed. I started hanging out with him and finally I went back to my dad and was like, ‘Dad, you got that surfboard that you got for me a long time ago?’ he said, ‘Yeah itʻs right in the shed.’ That started my whole surfing journey. Chris: What happened after that? Talk more about your path in the surf world and who helped inspire you along the way? Rico: We used to surf this one wave on the east side. It’s called Flags, and is just a kinda super underground wave. Not much people used to surf it back in the day. Now it’s just crowded and outta control just like everything else. But I think that was the first place I ever got barreled. Like legit barreled on a surfboard and I was like, ‘Ho, this is super rad.’ This one summer it was going off and I remember Braden Diaz, Randall Paulson and Strider guys, they all showed up and they were surfing. And it was my first time surfing with pros and just watching them rip and their approach to this wave that we’ve surfed all the time, I was like, ‘Wow’, there is more to surfing, there is another level, that you can never see in videos. You watch videos and it’s cool, you know? It looks like a turn, looks like I’m doing that turn. But to see it with your face, up close and live...I think it sparked something. It definitely motivated me and gave me the drive to wanna surf better and explore more and I was like, ‘Ok, where are these guys coming from? Where are they surfing? Shoot I wanna go where they’re surfing. I wanna surf Pipeline. I wanna get really barreled’. Chris: When did you start really want to pursue a surf career? When did it start to get serious? Rico: So all my friends surfed for this company, Osiris, it was a shoe company, and the team manager at the time became
a friend and started helping me with some products, some stickers for my board and stuff. It just felt good to be a part of something and I think just getting a sticker on my board, it really gave me confidence; It really gave the affirmation in the sense that somebody believed in me. It raised my awareness and my level of surfing. At that time, getting paid to surf Pipe and being, you know, a North Shore local, that was a thing. I remember Randall Paulson telling me one time that everybody has their niche; Everybody has something special and unique about them - find yours and go with it. My dad raised me with a strong work ethic, not only was I part of a company, but I also made myself available and did my best to show them a good time on the North Shore and that grew after Osiris. A lot of my friends, like Dustin Barca, rode for the company Oakley and when Oakley came on the scene Dino Andino was the team manager. And Daniel Lippert, the other team manager, he put me on. Just the flow program - he gave me some clothes, another sticker for my board. I was just like, ‘Ok this is cool, you know, this can go somewhere.’ And as time went on RonnyNelson took on Oakley, and he realized that I can do a lot for them in Hawai`i, not only surf and perpetuate the aloha spirit in the water in Hawai’i, but also be an asset to the company in many ways. Riders from all over the world come to Hawai`i and it’s a scary place to come for the first time. Have one of the boys show you around, paddle you out to Pipe, show you where the line-up is, you know that’s priceless. So you know I found out a way to be an asset to that company and we ended up getting a team house that was year-round, right at Off The Wall and I become the In-house Resident. You know so, not only was I being paid to surf but now I was getting free rent and getting to live right at the beach at Pipeline, the wave I dreamed and aspired to surf. And at that point you can say that I was living the dream. Fully living the dream, it was pretty awesome. And during that time I just wanted to surf Pipe, I wanted to prove myself out there, with the boys, establish myself in the line-up. I surfed it for years and just almost getting good ones, getting close-outs. I started competing. I think it was the Hansen’s back then, Hansen’s Energy (Pipe Pro). And then it was Monster. Different titles. Volcom now owns it. So that was our Pipe contest. And I did that for years. I got invited to the Pipe trials one year, made a couple rounds, so that was cool. First time I ever made money from a contest was at
Pipeline. I made it to the round of 32, round of 64… something like that. That was a big milestone for me to make money in a contest. And then I used to go with Danny Fuller - we would go to Tahiti, we would go to Teahupoo. Me and him would camp. We would bring a tent and actually camp with our surfboards and stay there for a month. We would always plan it out, three weeks before the trials. For Tahiti, I did the trials for six to seven years when it was really easy to get into the trials. Now I think it’s really hard, but I had fun doing that. I think I reached a point where I realized
that competing was tough. There’s only one winner. I realized I’m a bad loser and it was taking away from what my passion is in surfing: traveling, getting sick barrels, being with your friends, having a smile on your face. I was losing sight of that, and it become harder and harder to get into these contests. Traveling to, like, Huntington Beach and I remember entering a contest in Santa Cruz
and I didn’t have a wetsuit so I didn’t even show up and I was like, ‘Frik.’ Somebody told me how cold it was there and I was like, ‘I probably won’t go.’ I even showed up for my heat but still didn’t even go. It was becoming distasteful to me for multiple
Uncle Eddie, you’re the man. That was super special. No stress, just go out their with the boys and get the best waves around. This year, watching the Backdoor Shootout, I definitely got itchy. I would definitely want to do that contest again, so Uncle Eddie, put me
decisions, some poor choices and I did what I thought I needed to do so I could live that lifestyle. My choice was to sell drugs and I did it for a very long time.
reasons and I just kinda decided one day that, ‘You know what? I’m gonna start having fun again. I’m still getting paid, I’m living on the beach here at Pipeline. There’s no need to keep putting myself through this ringer and disappointment,’ and was like, ‘You know what? I’m done competing. I wanna have fun.’ And I love it! I still got to do the Backdoor Shootout, which is like, the best contest ever.
in, Coach! (Laughs)
were cornered into that? Was it frustrating to follow the dream?
Chris: So you were competing, in the midst of it; but yeah, it’s not for everybody, so what happened next? Rico: So talking about living the dream, to live that surfers lifestyle, you still need money to survive. Very early on, I made some bad
Chris: At the time, did you think that you
Rico: I glorified the lifestyle. I didn’t think there was anything wrong with it. I made the excuses and the justifications for what I was doing and why it wasn’t bad, never really took responsibility of looking at the actually damage that my actions were causing not
just me but, eventually me, but my family, my friends, loved ones, people I was selling it to, and ultimately me and my past caught up to me. Oakley was taking care of me and I actually stopped when Oakley gave me that chance and opportunity. ‘You know what? I’m not going to mess this up, I’m done’. And lo and behold they waited four-and-a-half years to come and hold me accountable for the offense I did years ago. And the next thing I knew, the Feds were knocking on my door. And I smile not because I’m proud of it, but [because] it feels good to be on the other side of my consequences. It’s over. It’s a huge lesson. Chris: Tell me what it was like in that moment? Not many people have experienced the police showing up at your door to arrest you... Rico: Yeah, you know I was in my regular daily routine, I was about to go surfing. I thought I was on top of the world - the big sponsor, staying at a house on the beach, big truck, all the friends...you know, I thought I was the man. It all changed with a knock on the door. The [Drug Enforcement Administration] D.E.A. gave me a visit and pulled me in and told me what time it was. They told me, “You’re going to prison.” and that day changed my life. I just seen everything I worked so hard for just slipping through my fingers, just a clear full view of all the choices and mistakes I made. Finally questioning my mistake, ‘Why’d I do that? Why would I jeopardize my freedom?’ The credibility of myself as a man, was like the scum of the earth. I felt like I let everyone down around me, people who believed in me, people who loved me. I just felt horrible. There is nothing to describe it - the amount of fear, anxiety, disappointment in yourself. It was just an angry moment for me; a scary, angry moment for me. It’s scary not to know the future for you and [that] it is in the hands of somebody else; When you lose control of everything you thought you had control over, it’s super scary. But you know when all is said and done, it was the best thing that ever happened to me. It striped me down to my pride and my ego. The pretense for who I thought I needed to be to have people like me, it striped me of that and showed me what was really important in life: freedom, relationship, family. All the money, the lust, the fancy light, it means nothing when you have the same clothes to wear as 3,000 other inmates and a locker the same size as a mini fridge to hold
the only stuff you have in the world. My prized possessions were my pictures and my letters that I got from my friends and family. The rest I can give a damn about; That’s all I had in the world. It really gave me an opportunity to ask myself some tough questions, to reflect on life and look back and try and set a new path and direction on where I wanna go and who I wanna be and the legacy I wanna live, what I want people to say about me when I’m gone. Chris: What were you charged with? How long you were sent away for? Rico: By the end of it all, I was charged with conspiracy to distribute powder cocaine. It’s a felony. The judge gave me 60 months, which is 5 years, of federal prison. I was sent to Lompoc, California, eventually transferred to Oregon, and then finally ending up in Bastrop , Texas where I finished my time. Chris: Local boy in foreign world... Rico: When I got to Texas I was the only person from Hawai’i. I went there for disciplinary reasons. I didn’t obviously learn my lesson going in there, I was still taking short cuts. Trying to break the rules and I ended up in the hole. I did 46 days in the solitary confinement. I got outta there just before Christmas. Chris: Tell me about being put in solitary confinement. Rico: Well, shoot... it was mid winter and the A/C was broken, meaning that it was stuck on. Forty degrees, four blankets & three pairs of socks. I thought I was gonna die of hypothermia. It was so cold in there, 24/7 lock up, you don’t leave your cell. It’s just you and your thoughts. I did a lot of writing, a lot of reading, a lot of push ups; I had a lot of time to think. I shared a cell with one other men for a bit. A 10’x8’ cell. You get a toilet in there and a sink. So you eat, sleep, and crap all in the same area, with another man, a grown man, that you don’t even know. At one point when I was in the detention center, I ended up sharing a cell with this guy and he was in there for life for murder. At that time, I was 35, he was in prison longer than I was alive. At one point, I thought “Is this guy gonna come after me if made him upset one night?” When he went to sleep he would put books on his chest and cover in case I came at him. I’m like, ‘It’s cool. I’m not coming after you.’ You know in prison, you’re told what to wear
and what time to wake up, what time to go to bed. How much stuff you can have, your whole life is dictated for you. You have this much freedom: You can choose what you read, what you watch, and how you spend your time. Everything else is decided for you. It’s all cool on TV, but I did that dance: Flunk, confirm the marshalls, handcuffed, shackled, machine guns pointed at you. It ain’t no fun the pater suit. You think you’re a tough guy, real fast, real tough - your true face, true cards, they really come out of who you are, and what you talk about. I don’t want any, I don’t wanna be in there, I don’t want that. I wouldn’t want that to happen to me, any of my friends. Any of you kids out there, it ain’t worth it. Your freedom is so valuable. It sucks. It’s not a place or life to be proud of that is glorified. Chris: So it was rough, but you kept it together while in prison. Was there ever a point where you were super motivated to get out? How did you adapt through this experience? Rico: First and foremost, you gotta hold on to something in there. I lost everything, I ruined relationships, no income, no career, everything I held dear was taken away and striped from me because of my actions, because of my choices, but you gotta dig deep, you gotta find something that’s gonna pull you through, something that gives you hope. So I found God; it gave me hope. It gave me hope, it gave me what I needed day-to-day. I did every program available that I could that could give me the best opportunity to change my life. Thank God there are programs in there. I actually took what was called the ‘Drug Program’. What the Drug Program was, was an in-patient. You live in a separate quarters. It was 10 months. I had two goes at it. It was 8 months and I got kicked out, and I don’t like to quit. One thing I learned about myself is tenacity and resilience. I had both, so I got back up, got back on the horse and I completed the Drug Program. So it was a cognitive therapy program - it did a lot with our thinking and help us to challenge a lot of our thinking patterns and different areas that we’re brought up with that essentially lead us to being and living the way we were. Because we all do have a choice to change, it just takes a lot of courage and discipline to change. It provided that; It gave me a space and opportunity to look at myself for who I was, allowed others to hold me accountable
“I lost everything, I ruined relationships, no income, no career, everything I held dear was taken away and striped from me because of my actions, because of my choices, but you gotta dig deep, you gotta find something that’s gonna pull you through, something that gives you hope. So I found God”
for the things I was saying I wanted to do. I wanna say it was like Hell, but it was actually one of the best things I could have done for myself. It taught me values, it taught me the importance of relationships, it taught me how to communicate better, it taught so much in day to day I still use the tools I acquired from that program. That was towards the end of my sentence. I finished and I finished strong. I had a plan, a release plan, very strongly in my mind, had set goals for myself for who I want to be and what I want to do for myself for when I get out. I wrote it all out and I stuck to it. Chris: What were some of the things you wrote down and wanted to accomplish? Rico: The biggest thing I wanted to get accomplished, more than get accomplished, was making sure I was good; That I was doing me; That I was being the “new” me. The first thing a person most wants to do when they get out is to go see old friends and it’s very easy to fall back into the patterns you were doing before you went to prison. I think it was very important for me to stay on a path of making sure I had a job. And this place, this gym, Kahala Crossfit the owner Shane Divis, believed in me. He gave me a chance, he gave me an opportunity. I was about to take a job washing the dishes at Duke’s and let me tell you, I felt so blessed, and grateful for the opportunity. I ended up getting sick and the owner here [at Kahala Crossfit] called me, and I never showed up for my interview at Duke’s. He wanted me to come in and let’s try this out. So I didn’t end up washing dishes. I was stoked to. I was ready to. And that was part of my plan - get a job. Doesn’t matter what it is, get a job. Something I never had all my life, a real job. I used to think it was foolish to be working a job when I can cruise and hang out all day, but little did I know that I was the fool. The working man is not a fool. The foolish man is the one who takes shortcuts and get around that ‘cause you can’t - in life there are not shortcuts. That was the biggest thing: get a job, no matter what it is. It may not be what you wanna do, but it’s part of the process of
getting where you wanna be. That’s where Duke’s was going to be but lo-and-behold God had other plans and now I’m here at Kahala Crossfit. I acquired a skill, I coach, I have a passion for fitness. Helping people achieve their goals...I think that’s one of the most rewarding things in life; to help others and see others succeed and be part of their journey. It’s selfless and gratifying all in the same breath. Chris: Are you using the skills you acquired in prison toward this job? Rico: Yeah. So, it was funny because two of the places I was designated to had a weight pile. And I started training crossfit. Kai Garcia and Charlie Carroll brought me
reading. It took me out of where I was and put me in what I would call “reality”. I took me out of where I didn’t want to be and put me where I wanted to be. That was awesome. I still read to this day; I read everyday. I ended up meeting this coach from Oregon, he coached football there and he taught me all these sprint routines. The next thing I knew I was leading these sprint classes three times a week, two days a week. And I was leading these workouts on the weight pile. We had two guys who were brave enough to try it. It’s totally unorthodox for the people in there have been locked up for 20 years... like, ‘Cross-what?’ They don’t know what the heck that is, they thought we were just jumping around all over the place and lifting weights at the same time. They thought we were crazy. But yeah, all that gave me a base and release, a little fight, and my choice of where I wanted to take my career. I counted surfing out. I didn’t think it was in the program anymore. Chris: How long have you been working here at Kahala CrossFit? Rico: Two years. Shortly after I became the head coach. Eventually I stepped down from that position for a couple reasons: First one being RVCA. I’m with RVCA full time now.
to crossfit before and it changed my whole perspective on style of training, because I’ve been training all my life, doing this, doing that. I fell in love with this stuff, but two of the prisons that I went to had weights...they were busted barbells and chipped plates, nonetheless, I was like, ‘Ok, let me do this.’ I took a personal trainer’s course correspondence while in there, and a strength and conditioning course. Both correspondence courses so I got my certificates while locked up. Any reading material I could get on Olympic lifting, high interval training was sent to me. I had great friends; John Johnson, you da man. And I just read and educated myself as much as I could. I really fell in love with reading. I read like 150 books, zero TV, almost got into a fight over the TV, so that was an easy choice. It needed to be cut out, so I just started
Chris: So, you thought surfing was out of it? Rico: Yeah I thought surfing was out of the question and lo-and-behold, one of my friends, he had the heart to help me out when I came home - Makua Rothman. He went up to California and mentioned something to me that he was gonna say something to RVCA. I had no expectation and I just love him for being my friend. Next thing I know I get a call from them, from Brophy, and he asked how would I like to be part of RVCA. You know start out small and start jogging and see where it goes. And then I said I would love to be and that was within three months of being home and I was signing a contract with RVCA. They believed in me. They had a space in their family for me. They looked passed my mistakes and failures and they were more interested on where I was going than where
WILD AT HEART
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I’ve been. That grew and the next thing I knew I started a kids program. Working more and more with the kids, getting involved in the RVCAloha, the house, just like I did for Oakley. It created a space where they wanted me full time. I’m so blessed to be part of such an amazing brand, with such an amazing founder and owner, Pat Tenore. Talk about someone who gives people second chances and has a heart of gold, Pat Tenore. He’s done so much for me. Makua Rothman, Danny Fuller, all the boys, they really stepped up, gave me a family and a home. I coach two days a week here at the gym. I believe I still need to acquire and work on my craft, which is coaching. It goes hand- in-hand, it’s very transferable right into surfing. We have RVCA Sport. I wanna work more with the kids and make a fitness program for them... still a little ways from that. But right here in Kahala I love our demographic. We are with house moms and working professionals, people that really want and love life and fitness. They’re here for the same reasons why I’m here training. They want a better life, that’s what it’s all about. Creating a better life for yourself, creating a routine that helps you become who you wanna be. To be a part of their journey is priceless, while RVCA’s giving me a home. Chris: All of a sudden, you’re back in Pipeline houses, kinda doing the same set up. Tell me, how was it coming back to doing what you thought you’d never do again? Rico: Yeah, so coming back I was a little apprehensive. There is a lot going on in surf culture, that maybe I should not be around. I was very prudent where I put myself in my surroundings and where I allowed myself in certain situations. Once I got acclimated of being around the boys, being back around the scene, being around the houses where people are drinking alcohol. I had the discipline not to step off the line I wanted to be on. It was like I never left. The game doesn’t change, the players do. Pipeline changes the line-up; it ain’t like it used to be. You gotta bunch of young kids out there. My first day back paddling out, kids were
paddling around me and calling me off! That was a piece of humble pie. I couldn’t do the things I used to. Kinda had to grit my teeth and say, ‘Ok.’ Chris: Quickly describe back in the old days - what would have happened? Rico: Some of the guys I was getting paddled around by came on the scene just the past four years and probably didn’t know who I was. They probably would have got a good head slap, probably get sent in. But guys kept telling me, ‘Times have changed, times have changed’ and they have: We don’t do that kind of crap anymore. At least I don’t. It was back to the drawing board. I need to
put my time back; I need to put my paddling back; I need to humble myself and just realize that it’s not the same. I’ve grown just like these kids have, like Pipeline has. Back to the source of life; Back to why we’re all there for the same reason: We wanna get barreled and have fun. I realize I had my time in the sun. I over-achieved what I thought I could when I was young and growing up. I’m just so thankful that I’m back in the water. I’m still able to surf Pipeline, I’m still in the mix. I gotta remind myself ‘Just smile, take it as it is,’ being stoked on being out there - I am, I really am. Chris: So I heard you took up a new hobby. Talk a bit about how you got into photography and what are you working on nowadays? Rico: I’m a recovering addict, I did my fair share of partying, my vices, my addictions. I’m
four-and-a-half years sober now. Four-and-ahalf years! It feels nice to say that. Almost 5 years sober. The same way nails drive out old nails, time needs to be replaced, you need to substitute things you used to do with new creative and healthy things. Upon my release, what am I going to do with all this time, what hobbies and different things I can do to be constructive and that I am passionate about. I bought a film camera, my girlfriend shoots film and video. She took me to this place. I bought my first camera, this 1960s twin reflex camera. It’s called a Rolleiflex. I just started shooting what I saw. I didn’t even call myself a photographer; I didn’t even like the term. I don’t like the label and I never went to school for it. I don’t really know what Iʻm doing, I’m just learning as I go. But I started shooting all my friends because I love them and I cherish them they’re all so accomplished and they inspire me so much. So I just started shooting them and it became a project and I believe it’s a lifelong project. I’ve been shooting the portraits of, you can call them icons of the surfing industry, but I just call them ‘my boys’. They’re guys I’ve surfed day-to-day with, that I’ve struggled with, I’ve had victories with. They’re my friends. Think I have 60 to 80 portraits of all the boys, my friends. It started out as a hobby, I believe it is. It has not become lucrative but it’s just a hobby and I need to be careful on not spending too much time on it. Chris- How did the photo show come about? How did it transition from just taking portraits of your friends to now be featuring them in a professional photography show? Rico: The store I bought the camera from and my first roll of film. It’s called the Tree House and the owner Bobby reached out and asked me if I wanted to be part of a group D.I.Y., Do It Yourself show. I said yes. I develop my own film, I processed it. I had a tiny bit of experience being in a dark room, being able to print my own photos. He gave the option of being able to send out your digital negs but it had to be shot on film. But I was like, ‘You know what? I wanna print it OG style, dark room style and print all my own prints.’
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I hit up John John and unfortunately he has some project going on. So look for something big from John John. He has a dark room. I wasn’t able to use his room but he offered all his equipment and I was about to take it. But then a few months ago, this lady, she had a Craigslist ad. She said 20 years she had all this dark room equipment stored, time to clear it, come pick it up. So I responded and I showed up to pick up all this stuff and it was so dusty, dirty, in pieces, I didn’t even know if it worked and after JJ told me that his dark room isn’t available I thought what’s my next option? Let’s see if this stuff works. I called up a friend of mine and assessed this equipment. We dusted everything off, cleaned it; It took me hours to clean it. I ended up breaking some stuff by accident. Here at the gym we have a kids room and on the weekend it never really gets used so I turned it into a dark room. I plugged everything in, everything worked. I bought some chemicals and I started going to town. I started printing, I started to do 10 prints. In the course of three weekends, I think I spent about 40 hours in there, learning as I’m doing it and with the help of my girlfriend who is so patient and so awesome. You know, I pulled it off! I got 10 prints done, and it’s showcased Saturday March 3rd at the Treehouse. Yeah, I’m super honored. I have no expectations, I’m just stoked somebody likes my work and having the opportunity to not only take the photos but be brave enough to show them, put yourself out there and risk being critiqued and being judged and I’m down for that. Everyone may not like my stuff, but that’s Ok; I’m cool with that. Whatever, that’s life. Some people catch on, some don’t. But yeah, super excited about that...such a big learning experience and great project. I didn’t realize how much work I was gonna have to put into it. But I’m proud of my work, what I do, and I’m excited to see where this goes and if not I have some rad photos of my friends that I will always keep as my photos.
Chris: So what’s the future? What’s the future for Rico Jimenez? Rico: The future of Rico Jimenez…it’s all about the kids. I always told myself the kids were the big motivators of my change when I was in prison. If I can change one kid’s life all this time, all this heartache, all this pain, suffering that I’m going through is worth it.
to flourition. They just grow, opportunities come. One of my mentors says, “Show up, be available, and do your best.” So whatever comes my way, and if it feels right in my heart, I feel the kids can benefit from it. I’m willing to show up, do my very best and see where it goes. Surfing-wise I wanna get in better paddling shape. Four years is a long time to be out of the water and I have to get those Pipeline muscles back. This winter was definitely better than last. But I’m ready to get some big barrels out at Pipeline again. Eric Arakawa, Tokoro, those guys have been helping out with some boards. And RVCA, I can’t thank them enough for what they are doing for me. Surfing is always something in my life. Pipeline is a special place. I fell in love with it a very long time ago. She ain’t going nowhere and neither am I, so kids, make space for Uncle. Chris: Where can people find Rico Jimenez? Rico: Find me @Popdaclutch I’m on Instagram, I ain’t on Facebook. It takes up too much time, but Instagram takes up too much time also. At the beach, Kahala Crossfit, come down, let’s get fit! I’m here Thursday through Friday morning but I’m training mostly everyday. You wanna come in, get a good workout, be around good people, positive people? This is the place for you. Come on down. pau
RVCA is a medium for me to do that. I got all these great kids that I am able to speak into their lives and especially help them learn from my mistakes. I wanna do more with the kids, I don’t know what it looks like; I definitely don’t wanna force it. The ways things have been going in my life, things have just come
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POW WOW HAWAII 2018 Local and international art transforms and beautifies Kaka’ako Photos @mrjasperwong Supported by the Hawaii Tourism Authority, POW! WOW! has grown into a global network of artists and organizes gallery shows, lecture series, schools for art and music, mural projects, a large creative space named Lana Lane Studios, concerts, and live art installations across the globe. The Hawaii event took place during Valentine’s Day week in February in the Kaka’ako district of Honolulu, and brings over a hundred international and local artists together to create murals and other forms of art. After touring the globe and beautifying the streets of ten different cities, contemporary art initiative POW! WOW! took to its hometown Oahu, Hawaii for its
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2018 festivities. Taking place between February 10th and the 18th, artists and musicians gatherered at Kakaâ€™ako and created all new murals and installations. The festival is fleshed out with a block party alongside the Honolulu Night Market, an exhibition curated by Thinkspace at the Honolulu Museum of Art, a print show with Detroit-based 1xRun, artist talks, screenings, foot golf tournaments with Kicks to the Pitch and Paradise Soccer Club, break dancing battles with UDEF, as well as concert with BAMP.
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The Global Wave Conference By Kahi Pacarro
Mushburgers are the future. Climate change is set to deliver increased storm events as a result of warmer waters. This could mean bigger waves, but once those waves reach shore will the waves be any good? With increased water on our reefs, the most likely outcome will be fat burgers. We’d better learn to foil or milk it before it’s too late. This drastic prediction is set to be the reality at many waves around and we in Hawaii will not be immune from this manmade induced flood. Our waves are at risk. Luckily there are Surfer’s taking steps to address these issues, but sadly unless others jump on board, we’re kinda screwed. Kelly will be laughing to the bank as we dole out $100/ hour to quench our thirst at his inland Ranch. Those unable to afford it will crowd inland river waves and bust the seams of Waimea River way too early. Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii got an invitation to speak at the Global Wave Conference this past March and it's one of those invitations you can’t ignore. In the small Industry of trying to save our oceans, the Global Wave Conference is the Super Bowl of Conferences. Hosted this year by Save the Waves and Surfrider Foundation, The GWC brought together the worlds leading surfing conservationists, scientists, and activists. We descended upon Santa Cruz to share and inspire. The results were nothing less than groundbreaking. Even Huey provided us with a spurt of overhead waves to remind us why we all do what we do. The conference was a barrage of seventy 10 minute presentations mixed with inspiring
talks from the likes of Shaun Thomson, Guy Kawasaki, Kyle Thiermann, Liz Clark, Greg Long and others. Like taking an unrelenting set of waves to the dome, the information filled our heads with residue remaining deep into our sinus cavities draining onto my keyboard even now. The main takeaway of the conference is that if we don’t begin making changes on a larger scale beyond our echo chambers, we’re destined for logs and foils yet our foils might be stuck getting caught on plastic trash. We can’t do this alone and need all Surfers to step up to the issues we’re facing before our favorite waves no longer exist. The issues surrounding the conference that I am about to address are not the result of bad planning by conference organizers but rather indicative of the broader issues we’re facing in surfing and the world as a whole. The organizers worked hard to include all walks of life, yet not all could participate. Economic disparities between female and male along with caucasian versus minorities results in a primary white male demographic diaspora being able to attend conferences. But the increased presence and outspoken individuals from these demographics show a positive gradual trend towards further inclusion. I was grateful to see increase presence and look forward to further inclusion of women and indigenous peoples. Women presenters made up 20% of the conference and included some of the most inspiring talks but I know as a surfing community, we can do better. There was also the lack of ethnic diversity yet much value was derived from it. Pablo Narvaez opened
the event with a touching story of his wave and home in Barra de la Cruz, Cliff Kapono brought a Hawaiian cultural narrative that provided the capstone of the conference while Bob Pearson ringed the conference in replicas of traditional olos and the alai’a. Nothing against my melanin challenged brothers, but hopefully the next conference will include a few more women and indigenous peoples. If the surf industry and the world as a whole included more women and indigenous peoples in decision making, we’d be able to navigate the rough and quickly rising plastic filled waters we are currently facing. The absence of certain major Surf brands at the event was apparent. Perhaps the fact that there wasn’t a specific session on this topic is because there unfortunately wasn’t much to share? If our big brands don’t want to lead the change, then we need consumer driven change. Let’s not buy crap but instead cherish value, circular economies while rejecting planned obsolescence. Supporting and promoting brands that care and eco-innovate will reward those focused on quality and sustainability. Those that don’t adapt will die. In all honesty, I think we need a bigger change that we have yet to identify. But having a Global Wave Conference that brings our minds together to collaborate while promoting collaboration outside of the conference will expedite the tipping point solving the issues we face. The last GWC was in Cornwall in England. With two conferences in a row in some of the coldest water I’ve ever surfed, I am sure hoping the next will be somewhere warm. But if they decide to go to Ireland or Nova Scotia, I’ll for sure be there. But I’ll be sure to bring booties next time and hopefully a few more wahine and bruddahs come too.
Photo Lee Jensen
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TROPIC SPORT by Kyveli Diener
Everyone says, “Be the change you want to see in the world,” but people rarely live up to the words. One company that can now count us among their biggest fans has truly walked the walk of this idea — or rather, surfed the surf.
by Kathleen Larson The deep and golden voice of Charlie Garrett, aka, Boyd Scofield has launched thousands of surf trips across the islands. One of the longest surf reporters for the Hawaii’s Surf News Network, “pray for surf,” and “I’ll see you in the water” are phrases that have greeted wave searchers for over 25 years across the local radio and news channels daily. Charlie’s love of surf began with the Beach Boys’ “Surfing Safari” and a summer vacation to Oceanside, California when he was 16. Upon returning to Half Moon Bay he hitchhiked to San Francisco and rented a board at Jack’s Surf Shop. This, his first surfari, ignited a lifelong passion. He’s noted in “Stoked” by Drew Kampion as having been the first to brave the macking 20+ crests at Mavericks. Charlie made Hawaii his home in 1980 and carved many a salty curl with his favorite board, “big log,” a 10’ Wardy Hawaii. His favorite “secret” surf spot was Charlie’s Reef, but he was often seen at Tongs, Castles, Canoes, Haleiwa, and buddy boarding to Diamond Head. Besides the joy of surfing, Charlie also spent 20+ years as the Ghost Rider of the airwaves interviewing such music superstars as Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson and Roy Rogers to name just a few. Thousands woke up with Charlie from the Big Island to Guam when he cracked the mic on KDEO and KHCM. Although he was dubbed the “King of Country” and received an award for his DJ expertise, he was also quite adept in various musical genre and under another pseudonym graced those who loved Rock n Roll as well. Charlie Garrett, July 27, 1947 to January 24, 2018, gone way too soon. He will forever be loved and in the hearts of his daughter Jill, grandkids Lily and Logan, his son Clinton and by his Surfer Girl and Soul Mate Kathleen. Aloha oe.
Tropic Sport is a reef-friendly sunscreen and skincare line developed for over four years by Australian entrepreneur and lifelong waterman Tony Palmer, his motivation being that country suffers from the world’s highest rate of melanoma, a deadly form of skin cancer that is 98% treatable if detected early, yet drops to an 18% survival rate if left unattended long enough for it to spread from the skin — our body’s largest organ — to the rest of our vitals. Tropic Sport is a unique mineral sunscreen, meaning it physically prevents the sun’s ultraviolet rays from hitting your skin. Unlike other pasty mineral sunscreens, Tropic Sport’s luxurious formula acts like a lotion, rubbing on smoothly without leaving you white as a ghost. The main obstacle to popularizing reef-friendly mineral sunscreens is the price, but people need to reapply 90-minute chemical sunscreens six times a day for full protection, which exactly zero people are doing. Since Tropic Sport’s four-hours-water-resistant formula only needs to be applied twice a day, the cost-per-day balances out. Our state faced an uphill battle in 2017 trying to legislatively ban oxybenzone, the main ingredient in popular chemical sunscreens like Hawaiian Tropic, Coppertone, and Banana Boat, which actively introduce drugs that battle UV rays into your bloodstream. Efforts to ban oxybenzone were thwarted by lobbyists representing makers of over the counter meds, cosmetics and personal care industries, who claimed that coral bleaching is actually caused by climate change, agricultural runoff, sewage, and overfishing. Since tourists drawn to our reefs support 70% of Hawaii’s economy, Aqua-Aston resorts began offering free samples of another excellent
reef-friendly option, Raw Elements, as well as education on the effects of oxybenzone. It’s some nasty stuff: in addition to definitively contributing to coral bleaching and reef death, it affects humans by lowering sperm count in men, altering breast milk, and exacerbating breast cancer in women with metastases. Enter Tropic Sport, their love for people and nature, and the support of Jamie O’Brien, who has officially joined the brand’s “No Assholes Allowed” crew alongside his partner Annika Bauer. Tropic Sport operates under the Three C’s: Caring for the Skin: skin cancer affects one in five Americans, and surfers at three times that rate, so Tropic Sport wants everyone to know the difference between UVA / UVB rays and the ABCs of melanoma detection. UVA rays are aging rays that cause wrinkles and drooping skin, whereas UVB are burning rays that turn you red and crispy. While UVB rays are affected by the weather and can be avoided indoors, UVA rays are 50% stronger and permeate clouds and windows. UVA rays get 4% stronger with every 300 meters of elevation gain, and both types are reflected by snow and water. The ABCs of melanoma detection can save your life. You’re looking for Asymmetry, or any mole not perfectly mirrored on each side. Borders should be well-defined, and color should be consistent throughout the mole. Diameter should not exceed 6 millimeters, and any evolution in a skin spot should be noted and checked. Best bet: wear sunscreen daily and see a skin doctor once a year. Caring for the Environment: Tropic Sport keeps that reef-and-humanunfriendly oxybenzone out by instead using zinc oxide, titanium oxide, and other natural ingredients that keep our marine life happy. Furthermore, all of their SPF 30 sunscreens, specifically formulated cleansers, and JOB-approved moisturizers come in containers made from recycled materials. Caring for the Community: Hawaii loves Tropic Sport because Tropic Sport loves Hawaii. The company donates 20% of all sales to organizations like the Mauli ‘Ola Foundation, Sunset Beach Elementary arts programs, and Surfrider Foundation’s local Hawaiian branches. Now that you love Tropic Sport too, you just need to know is where to get it. You can go online to www.tropicsport.com, to three Saint Bernard locations in Texas, or to two resorts in Florida and one in Mexico. But luckily for us, Hawaii is the largest retailer of Tropic Sport products. Grab yours at North Shore Surf Shop, Brazilian Showroom, Up and Riding, Honolulu Surf Room, Rocky Point Collective, Tropical Rush, Surf N Sea, Celestial Natural Foods, the Sunrise Shack, and Surf Garage.
I N DUSTRY NOTE S The JJF Collection from Dakine is available now at specialty surf shops and online at www.dakine.com. “BORN & RAISED” SERIES DEBUTS IN HONOLULU
DAKINE RELEASES NEW JOHN JOHN FLORENCE SURF TRAVEL BAG Considered the best surfer in the world, John John Florence has been on a surfboard since his infancy, originally signing with Haiku-born surf brand Dakine at age 7. Since then he’s been gracing covers of magazines, redefining the approach to progression and dominating the World Tour. For Spring 2018, Dakine expands the JJF Collection to continue to support the needs of surfers from all walks of life. Florence brings his passion, experience, and demands of a traveling athlete to the Dakine brand to influence the collection that is built on the details. The new John John Florence Daylight Thruster surfboard travel bag ($70$90 depending on length) is constructed of lightweight yet durable 420 denier nylon ripstop with TPU venting, has a heat reflective silver tarpaulin interior to regulate heat inside the bag, and is lined with a protective 8 mm closed cell foam padding for added protection. The slim silhouette also features a corrosion-proof molded YKK #10 main zipper, water-resistant stash pocket, padded grab handle, and breathable padded shoulder strap for carry comfort. The JJF Collection also includes hyper-grippy traction pads custom designed exclusively for Florence and a series of surf leashes. All of the products ship in eco-friendly packaging that is built from recycled paper with less waste and no plastic to highlight a collection that is all about pushing the limits of surf accessories so one of the most progressive riders can continue to change the game. 64
The inaugural episode of “Born and Raised,” a series of short documentary films by Etienne Aurelius, premiered on February 23 at the Modern in Honolulu. Each episode in the series will highlight top athletes in surf regions around the globe, with the premiere episode focusing on the birthplace of surfing itself: Hawaii. The debut showing told the stories of top Hawaiian watermen Kai Lenny, Billy Kemper, and brothers Makuakai and Koa Rothman, who were all in attendance at the
screening. The red-carpet event also featured live musical performances by local artists Estelle Ines and Landon McNamara. View more about “Born and Raised” at www. vimeo.com/aureliuscinema HAWAII’S WORLD CHAMPS HONORED IN AUSTRALIA Five 2017/2018 World Champions from all walks of competitive surfing and all hailing from the Hawaiian Islands — three from Oahu’s North Shore and two from Maui’s — were among the athletes honored at the annual WSL Awards on the Gold Coast of Australia on March 8. Proudly holding a Hawaiian flag together as they posed for photos were World Junior Champion Finn McGill, 2x Men’s World Champion John John Florence, Women’s World Longboarding Champion Honolua Blomfield, 2x Women’s Big Wave World Champion Paige Alms, and Men’s Big Wave World Champion Billy Kemper. Congratulations to all of our homegrown World Title holders!
LIFEPROOF EXPANDS PARTNERSHIP WITH WSL FOR 2018 SEASON The World Surf League announced a partnership March 6 with U.S. top-rated waterproof phone case LifeProof across the 2018 North American events as well as the season kickoff at the Quiksilver and Roxy Pro Gold Coast. LifeProof will hit the sand and surf at six 2018 WSL events, including: Quikslver and Roxy Pro Gold Coast in Queensland, Australia (March 11 - 22); Founders’ Cup of Surfing in Lemoore, California (May 4 - 6); Vans US Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach, California (July 30 - August 5); Surf Ranch Lemoore in Lemoore, California (September 5 - 9); Hawaiian Women’s Pro in Hawaii (November 25 - December 6); and the Billabong Pipe Masters on Oahu, Hawaii (December 8 - 20). LifeProof offers a range of award-winning mobile device cases, accessories, and waterproof Bluetooth speakers. Its lightweight, premium protective cases safeguard devices from Apple, Samsung, Google, and more. LifeProof’s best-selling water-proof case, FRA, is waterproof to 6.6 feet for up to one hour, drop proof to 6.6 feet, and completely sealed from sand, dust and dirt, making it perfect for surfers, beachgoers, and adventure-seekers everywhere. For more information about LifeProof, visit www.lifeproof.com. ROCHELLE BALLARD / STORMBLADE Rochelle Ballard former pro surfer runs Surf into Yoga | Kauai Wellness & Adventure Retreats, a high end surf/sup welness program Rochelle is using Storm Blade for her programs and also deals the lineup through Nukumoi Surf on Kauai. Storm Blade foam boards have been developing collection solely for use with learn to surf programs featuring Extruded Barrier Top Deck skins, superior cores with laminated epoxy coated stringers, and Skintec™ strengthening reinforcement.
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Shane (back) Dorian reunited with his old flame Backdoor on the last clean swell of the winter season. Just one of the many perks to being “camp counselor” at this year’s Billabong Bloodlines Grom Camp. photo: Tony Heff