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Breaking Surf: Boardroom out of U.S. Open of Surfing

Also, Rockin' Fig is set to be inducted into Surfer's Hall of Fame.

April 30, 2013|By Andrea Hanst

The highly anticipated surfing industry trade show the Boardroom got the boot before its massive footprint even hit the beach, according to a news release.

The consumer surfing forum put on by GLM will move from the Vans U.S. Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach this summer to the O.C. Fair & Events Center in Costa Mesa on Oct. 5 and 6, the release said.

"We made this decision reluctantly, given our respect for both Huntington Beach and the U.S. Open of Surfing," GLM founder and show director Scott Bass said in a statement.

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GLM Chief Executive Charles McCurdy attributed the split with IMG Worldwide, which owns the U.S. Open, as an inability to filter, regulate and control attendance through charging admission to GLM's events. Admission would ensure integrity at a venue where 700,000 showed up for the 2012 U.S. Open.

"This was a game changer for our industry," IMG Senior Vice President James Leitz said. "Unfortunately, like some big ideas, things just didn't work out."

Vans, the new sponsor for the U.S. Open, is committed to hosting for the next three years.

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'Rockin' Fig' gets recognized, again

It started out with the usual epic surf session on the northside of the Huntington Beach Pier and turned into a legendary day for Rick "Rockin' Fig" Fignetti.

April 23 was another perfect Southern California spring day. Fig was feeling good after his usual protein shake (he swears by 'em) and acai bowl. According to other local surfers in the lineup, he certainly wasn't surfing like someone in his 50s — more like a teenager.

Fig was setting up his wares on Main Street for Surf City Nights when the son of Aaron Pai, Huntington Surf and Sport's Surfer's Hall of Fame founder, walked up and presented Fig with an envelope. Thinking it was his official invite to host the Hall of Fame induction ceremony, like he has done numerous times before, he really didn't look too closely at the letter. But when he finally did, well, that's when that good day became an insanely good day.

It took a few minutes to sink in, but there it was — Fig was to be inducted into the Surfer's Hall of Fame as a Local Legend. What an honor, and it couldn't happen to a better guy.

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