SEA BRIGHT: BACK IN THE SKIM OF THINGS

The summertime edition of the annual Skimbash tournament returns to the waters just off Sea Bright, this Saturday and Sunday. (File photo by Peter Lindner)

Although at first glance the array of aerial leaps, spins, and acrobatics have more in common with skateboarding than with surfboarding — and the sometimes slapstick finishes to the maneuvers have the spills running neck-and-neck with the thrills —  there’s little doubt that the event known as  SkimBash is sufficiently serious to attract polished competitors from many hundreds of miles away.

There’s serious prize money at stake, too, when the nationally sanctioned summer edition of Skimbash returns to “the pristine beach and consistently good wave conditions” of the Sea Bright shoreline, for a two-day stay this Saturday and Sunday, June 24 and 25.

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ON THE GREEN: PADDLE, SKIM, RUNBIKESWIM

rb paddle day 091414 12All ages and skill levels are invited to take it to the river on Saturday, when Paddle the Navesink Day returns to the Red Bank waterfront, above, while Skimbash brings top Skim USA Pro/Am Tour action to Sea Bright. (Photo above by John T. Ward; below by Peter Lindner)

skimbashThe beach-badge booths are boarded up; the “Bennys Go Home” banners lovingly folded with the care befitting a precious family heirloom. But on the ocean beaches and waterways of the Greater Red Bank Green, it’s still very much Local Summer; a busy interlude of family-friendly festivals, recreational opportunities and other welcome rituals.

The weekend ahead sees the reappearance of three such signifiers of Local Summer living — including the September edition of SkimBash in Sea Bright, and the annual Iron Girl Women’s Triathlon on Sandy Hook.

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SEA BRIGHT: SKIM, SWIM INTO LOCAL SUMMER

skimbashThe annual September edition of Skimbash brings top Skim USA Pro/Am Tour action to Sea Bright this Saturday — and the Athleta Iron Girl Triathlon hits the Hook on Sunday — as Local Summer continues apace. 

Jersey Shore Tri GalsIn case you haven’t gotten the memo, it’s Local Summer — the sun is still riding high in the sky and the evenings are still long and languid as you allow them to be; even as the beach-badge booths are shuttered and the “Bennys Go Home” banners are lovingly folded and stored away in vac-seal bags for another season.

Veteran locals can tell you that September on the greater Green is a busy interlude of family-friendly festivals, recreational opportunities and yearly ritual tournaments — and this weekend, two genuine signifiers of Local Summer return to nearby beaches, with the re-appearances of SkimBash in Sea Bright, and the Athleta Iron Girl Women’s Triathlon on Sandy Hook.

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SEA BRIGHT: THE ‘BASH IS BACK

skim-71352The summertime edition of the annual Skimbash returns to the waters just off Sea Bright Saturday and Sunday. (Photos by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge.)

skim-71247A locally launched attraction begins anew this Saturday and Sunday when SkimBash returns to “the pristine beach and consistently good wave conditions” of the Sea Bright shoreline, following a two-year relocation in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

If that doesn’t ring true somehow, you’re probably thinking of the September Skimbash that continued post-Sandy during the “Local Summer” interval. This, however, is the June edition that’s been unseen on the borough’s municipal beach since 2012.

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SEA BRIGHT: SKIMBASH STORMS THE SURF

The pro and amateur participants in SkimBash, the Jersey Shore’s premiere skimboarding competition, enjoyed nearly two full days of great skimming weather and surf in Sea Bright this weekend. Here’s a selection of photos from Saturday, before a storm rolled in late in the afternoon.  (Photo by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

SEA BRIGHT: SKIMMING WITH THE ‘SHARKS’

SkimbashTop skimboarding talent converges on Sea Bright this weekend as the annual Skimbash event brings the Skim USA Pro/Am Tour action to the borough’s municipal beach. (File photos by Peter Lindner) 

It’s fast becoming one of the most anticipated sporting events of that post-Labor Day interlude known as Local Summer — a nationally sanctioned tournament that draws top competitors from up and down the Atlantic shores, as well as the Gulf Coast.

Not even the devastation wrought by Hurricane Sandy could wipe out the spirit of SkimBash, billed as the “premier Pro/Am skimboarding contest on the Jersey Shore,” and an annual occurrence that’s put Sea Bright on the map for a certain segment of the populace — thanks in large part to Jersey Shore Skim Camp owner Felecia Stratton, who inaugurated Skimbash in 2003 (it was folded into Skim USA’s national pro tour in 2009).

On Saturday and Sunday, September 6 and 7, the stretch of sand and surf out back of Borough Hall will once again come alive with a gathering of the pros who compete for cash — in addition to the talented sharks, shredders, newbies and groms anxious to show off their skills, and the all-ages aficionados who are there to cheer on their favorites.

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SEA BRIGHT: SKIMMING THE SURF’S EDGE

Scenes from Sunday’s action at the two-day Skimbash 2013 held this weekend in Sea Bright. The competition is considered the premier pro/am skimboarding event on the Jersey Shore. (Photos by Peter Lindner.)

SKIMBOARDERS ENJOY WAVE OF POPULARITY

Some of the onshore action at SkimBash in Sea Bright last weekend. (Photo by Connor Soltas. Click to enlarge)

By CONNOR SOLTAS

When semi-pro skimboarder Colton Wallace, 19, throws down his board in a headlong sprint, the crowd knows it’s in for something good. Cameras turn and the announcers fall silent. The clapping pauses.

What follows looks a lot like skateboarding: leaping onto the moving board, Wallace spins it below him with a flick of the ankle and lands the trick, still moving in the same direction.

Though Wallace, who traveled from Gulf Shores, Alabama to compete, took first place in his division, he was far from alone in pulling off impressive feats. Despite lackluster wave conditions, “A-plus” talent marked Sea Bright’s SkimBash 2012, announcer Brett Mahon said of the weekend contest.

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SEA BRIGHT: FOMENTING FUN

SkimBash, the “premiere pro/am skimboarding contest on the Jersey shore,” took to the small waves in Sea Bright Saturday and Sunday.

Photographer Peter Lindner was there for redbankgreen to catch the rock & roil.

To enlarge the photo display, start it, then click the embiggen symbol in the lower right corner. To get back to redbankgreen, hit your escape key.

SEA BRIGHT BASH GOES NATIONAL

skimboarder1A contestant hits the water in last year’s Skimbash event in Sea Bright. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

In its eight years of wave-hopping, Skimbash has gone from family fun in the suburban seascape of Sea Bright to full-swell national attraction, drawing hundreds of participants and spectators from beyond the state.

This year, the borough is hosting, in addition to its usual end-of-summer contest, a portion of the traveling Skim U.S.A. Pro Tour, which had been held on Long Beach Island for years, said Felecia Stratton, one of the founders of Sea Bright’s Skimbash.

“They said, ‘we love it in Sea Bright. Can we do it there?'” Stratton said of the tour’s organizers. “We were thrilled.”

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