Skimboard contest to benefit The Rose
By BOB RUGGIERO
It's not quite surfing and it's not quite skateboarding, but for a group of enthusiasts at Cy-Fair High School, skimboarding combines the thrills and the challenges of both those sports. And there will be plenty of daring aerial and aquatic stunts at this year's Skim Jam.
Now in its third year and coordinated by the group Skim 2 Live, the event will feature skimboarding competitions and demonstrations in Cypress Creek, along with food, drink, a DJ, auctions and raffles.
All of Skim Jam's proceeds will benefit The Rose, a Houston-based breast cancer awareness and advocacy organization.
It's basically hydroplaning over water," said Ryan Efaw, president of Skim 2 Live and a Cy-Fair High senior, adding that skimboards are about half the size of a regular surfboard and can come in circular or more oval-shaped sizes.
And while wave" skimboarders take to the beach, Skim 2 Live members prefers flatland" skimboarding on wooden boards in water 1"-2" deep. The group usually practices where Little Cypress Creek and Big Cypress Creek meet behind the Ravensway subdivision.
We also have rails to do tricks like you have in skateboarding," he said. But because the rocker, or curvature of the board, is continuous throughout, there's no front or back."
Skimboarders use the board's edge to control direction, he said.
Skim 2 Live formed at the school in 2004, and the first Skim Jam was held in 2008 under the direction of member Carey Seyler. Seyler lost his mother to breast cancer while he was in the fourth grade, and he wanted the event to serve a greater purpose.
I spent all my time skimboarding in Cypress Creek. But with Skim Jam, I wanted to give back to the community because I know a lot of people are effected by this disease," said Seyler, who is now a student at UT San Antonio. And even if you're not into skimboarding, you can come and learn a lot about breast cancer awareness."
The event raised $250 the first year and $1,300 last year. The target for this year's fundraising is $3,000.
And while Seyler continues to advise Skim 2 Live and take part in Skim Jam, he said it's important to keep the group, which has about 15 members, limited to Cy-Fair High students.
I think it's possible for high schoolers to do great things," Seyler said, and it's extra special when you see that they are putting on this event and raising all this money by themselves."
Shannon Streetwaves, Underground Surf Depot, Dashboard Skimboards, Kayotic Skimboards, Logo Clothing, MNF Technology, KGM Trucking Equipment and Food Town have donated funds or goods to help make the event happen.
And for those not quite ready to handle acrobatic twists and turns in the air without risking bodily injury or embarrassment, the group will host a skim school" following the competition to teach the basics of the sport.
You definitely have to practice a lot," Efaw said. But everyone has their own style."
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