National Park Service Celebrates 100 Years

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Eight Coastal Treasures to Discover!

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Written by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel

100 Birthday CakeJoin the party! America’s National Park Service is celebrating its centennial anniversary.

After decades of lobbying by passionate conservationists, including President Theodore Roosevelt and John Muir, for a special agency to oversee the country’s national parks and monuments, finally they succeeded.

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On August 25, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed the act creating the National Park Service, a new federal bureau in the Department of the Interior, to protect the 35 national parks and monuments that existed then and any future parks.

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Thanks to the vision and pioneering work of nature lovers who saw the beauty and value in America’s undisturbed forests, mountains, valleys, deserts and coasts, these areas –

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from Yellowstone and Yosemite to the Grand Canyon. Denali and the Everglades

– are now protected and preserved for future generations to enjoy.

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Keep it for your children, your children’s children,
 and for all who come after you. – Theodore Roosevelt

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Today there are 58 national parks in all with California and Alaska – with eight parks each – having more parks than any other state.

SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel, who were both Girl Scouts, grew up camping and know how lucky we are in America to have so many national parks to explore and enjoy. What’s more, many of them are right on the beach! Each of the eight parks below offers a unique coastal experience that celebrates the world of nature.

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Eight National Parks On the Coast

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Redwood Forest National and State Park, North of San Francisco, combines the majesty of the giant Redwoods with 40 miles of pristine coastline.

 

Santa Monica Cave National Park

The Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, near Malibu, is a breathtaking ocean retreat just a short drive from Los Angeles.

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Channel Islands National Park, off the coast of Santa Barbara, CA, encompasses five islands that are home to many rare species of plants and animals and archaeological and cultural sites.

Olympic National Park, in Washington, has close to a million acres of beautiful vistas from glacier-topped Mt. Olympus and old-growth rain forests to over 70 miles of raw coastline.

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Cape Cod National Park, Massachusetts, has over 40 miles of beaches, marshes and ponds. Observing its tranquility, Henry David Thoreau said, “A man may stand there and put all America behind him.”

Acadia National Park, Maine, a 47,000-mile getaway on a rugged coast, offers the chance to see moose, whales, and bears against a backdrop of deserted beaches and granite mountain peaks.

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Haleakala National Park, Hawaii, on Maui, is considered a sacred spot and offers the opportunity to see glorious sunsets over the Haleakala volcanic crater.

biscayneBiscayne National Park, Florida, is an ocean enthusiast’s dream with turquoise waters, barrier islands and vibrant coral reefs to explore.

These coastal treasures – and America’s 50 other national parks – would be standouts on any Bucket List!

Whether you want to swim, surf, hike, walk, or just admire the view, there’s a park waiting for you to discover and to celebrate on this National Park Service Centennial.

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Party Aussie Style!

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Fashionista Kathryn Porritt Shares the Look

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Presented by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel

Say “G’day!” Throw a shrimp on the barbie and get ready to party in style the way they do in the Land Down Under.

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With summer parties still going strong in the Northern Hemisphere there’s always the question “What to wear?”

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When it comes to fashion, guys are lucky. Just pull on a classic T or Hawaiian shirt and you’re all set. But, what’s a gal to do?

SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug  and Patti Kishel just heard from Aussie fashion stylist Kathryn Porritt, the owner of online beach fashion website Bondi Lifestyle, that the answer to that is easy.

In a word, she says,”Kaftans!”

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Whether it’s cotton or silk, casual or chic, there’s a style of Kaftan that’s just right for any party occasion. Take a look at this story Kathryn wrote for Surf’n Beach Scene Magazine and channel your own summer fashion fantasies.

Kaftans are your Ultimate Summer Party Choice

Written by Kathryn Porritt

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The famous set are all wearing them at LA pools.  The glitterati are swanning around yachts in the Mediterranean in them.  The glamorous at the beach resort are all relaxing with a cocktail in them.

They’re everywhere, and they’re chic.  They’re kaftans and they’re your ultimate summer party choice.

For a Summer wedding or a party around the pool, a Kaftan embellished in crystals and sequins in the color of your choice, is the ultimate in party glam.  You’ll be ultra comfortable and incredibly chic all at once – and how many pieces of clothing do that for you?

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Feathers-Silk-Maxi-Kaftan-002Kaftans come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, but the most chic are maxi kaftans that fall to your ankles – either plain or embellished – and have sweeping batwing sleeves and low necklines.

This shape suits every size and shape, from the petite among us to plus size divas.  Showing off your décolletage with encrusted jewels at the neckline and floating in a silky maxi dress is the ultimate in summer chic.

The maxi kaftan evokes glamour and style – effortless resort chic, that never clings and always feels cool to the touch.  From hand painted kaftans that would look at home in a Grecian resort to a rainbow of sunset colors sparkling at dusk, your pick of hues that suit your mood and the theme of your soiree is unlimited.

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Indie and boho chic is everything right now, and if you want to get the boho look, but you left your inner hippie in the 70’s, kaftans will bring the look you want to your party style without compromising on your contemporary glamour.

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A linen, cotton or silk kaftan in a midi or maxi cut can be worn with sandals or brightly colored heels for an elegantly indie party look.  Add as much bling as you dare to your necklaces, wrists and ears with boho accessories that offer romantic sparkle. Natural loose hair in waves is just perfect with a fun plait on the side to bring a little bit of cheeky fun to the look at night.

Kaftans for Beach Weddings

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A destination or beach wedding always brings excitement!  Planning the perfect outfit can be a disaster, though, if you’re not mindful of cool fabrics and easy to wear pieces.

A kaftan can be the perfect choice because the shape is flattering to every shape and size from petite to plus size, and the fall of the fabric never clings, so you’ll always feel cool, no matter if you’re scorchingly hot!

Depending on the time of day the wedding is being held, and whether it’s a resort or beach ceremony, wear your kaftan with high beaded sandals or low slung flats, masses of gold jewelled necklaces, stacked bangles, and a big statement cocktail ring.

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As you can see, Kathryn Porritt is a fashionista extraordinaire!

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Bondi Lifestyle, her beach fashion and leisurewear website – named after Australia’s famous Bondi Beach – is a top online marketer with customers from around the world seeking it out.

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Kathryn told SurfWriter Girls, “You’ll find a beautiful range of Australian kaftans shipped worldwide. Every season, shape and size are catered to.”

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Animals Go On Surfin’ Safari

Pets are Hotdog Surfers

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Written by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel

Let’s go surfin’ now
Everybody’s learning how
Come on and safari with me

People aren’t the only ones who are following The Beach Boys song and going on a Surfin’ Safari. Dogs of all sizes and shapes, cats, pigs, goats, and more are heading out on surfboards to enjoy the beach action.

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goat surfing

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Every year surf dogs from around the world come to California’s Huntington Beach and Imperial Beach for Petco’s Unleashed Surf Dog Competition.

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With paws on the nose and tails wagging, the canine competitors go all out to see who’s Top Dog.

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Didga, the Aussie skateboarding cat phenomenon, shows that she’s got some surf moves, too, and isn’t afraid to get wet. Go, Didga! Go!

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SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel love seeing all the animals out in the water having fun. Our friend Huntington Beach surf artist Dave Reynolds is a sight to see when he goes surfing with his best buds Nacho and Lance, a Chihuahua and a Labrador mix. Nacho may be little, but he holds his own against the big dogs.

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When you’re on dry land, to keep the fun going for groms (and adults, too!), take a look at this book we discovered:The Surfing Animals Alphabet by Jonas Claesson, a Swedish artist and designer who lives in Australia.

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Featured in Surfer magazine, this illustrated alphabet book with animals in the ABCs lineup, is just the thing to get little surfer dudes and dudettes on board about reading.

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As for the animals, now that the dog days of summer are here they want to have fun!

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Vans US Open of Surfing 2016

Surfers Head to Surf City!

2016 US Open Surf logoWritten by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel

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Cowabunga! Vans US Open of Surfing is back in Huntington Beach (July 23-31) with 500,000 people hitting the sand and streets to watch the week-long surfing action.

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Some of the largest cash prizes in the sport are at stake and the opportunity to accumulate ranking points on the surf tour.

Last year’s USOS champions Hiroto Ohhara from Japan and Johanne Defay from France will be trying for repeats. They were both underdogs when they staged their upset wins. But,that’s definitely not the case now.

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Brazilians Felipe Toledo and Alejo Muniz – both former USOS champions – want to get back on the winners’ platform. Local favorite Courtney Conlogue from Santa Ana, who won the event in 2009, is eager for another shot at the crown, too. And, as the top ranked woman in the world, she is a strong contender.

Courtney Conlogue

Two-time champion (2009 & 2010), HB’s own Brett Simpson, is on the scene, too, and is a fan fav with supporters hoping he can three-peat.

Brett Simpson

With so many returning stars and up-and-coming surf athletes, there’s no telling who will take home the men’s and women’s champion trophies.

Celebrating its 50th anniversary in style, Vans – the Off the Wall shoe company – has transformed this year’s Vans USOS into a festival of discovery with creative workshops,

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classic games and interactive activities for all.

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The event is about surfing and more. It has evolved into one of the premiere action and sports festivals in the world.

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Kevin Bailey, VF and Vans Global Action Sports and Outdoor Brand President, says Vans has been “counting the days” until the event and is excited to be “once again in iconic Surf City, USA to celebrate the world’s greatest athletes in surf, skate, and BMX.”

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In addition to putting the best men’s and women’s surfers on center stage, the USOS is also the setting for new inductees into the Surfing Walk of Fame (Thursday, July 28) and Surfers’ Hall of Fame (Friday, July 29).

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Among the new inductees are sentimental favorites, brothers Ryan and Timmy Turner, whose family runs HB’s Sugar Shack restaurant on Main Street, and surfing pastor Rev. Blaine “Sumo” Sato.

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And longboarding fans won’t want to miss the Vans Joel Tudor Duct Tape Invitational part of the Open (July 29 and 30) that has longboarders in the spotlight showcasing their best moves.

Skate and BMX enthusiasts can watch the world’s top skaters and riders compete in a custom-designed concrete bowl on the sand.

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SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel are always amazed that there’s so much to see and that the Open is an event the whole community can enjoy. It’s a week to have fun at the beach, take a break and let yourself chill.

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Hosted in partnership with the World Surf League and event owner and operator IMG, official sponsors of this year’s USOS include Vans, Samsung Galaxy, Jeep, Go Pro, AirBnB, Pacifico, Workday, Credit Karma, G-Shock, and LifeProof.

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With so much going on,

 it’s time to put on your sunscreen and head to Surf City!.

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The Bungalow HB Opens!

Lounge Stakes Claim in Huntington Beach!

Hosts Surfrider Foundation Benefit Bash

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Written by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel

There’s a new instant-classic place to chill in Huntington Beach these days – The Bungalow.

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A lounge with a private clubhouse feel…and a killer view of the HB Pier, it’s perfect for relaxing with a cool sangria, meeting friends, playing a game of pool or listening to music groups.

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Announcing its presence with a pre-opening bash July 7th, the event benefited the non-profit Surfrider Foundation Huntington/Seal Beach Chapter.

Featuring Brandon Boyd, Mike Einziger and Ben Kenney from multi-platinum-selling rock band Incubus, The Bungalow was jammed with people waiting to get inside.

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Surfrider’s Huntington/Seal Beach Chapter Chairperson Tony Soriano was at the door eager to greet everyone and help get the party going.

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Soriano told SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel that he’s excited about “the support The Bungalow is giving to Surfrider’s environmental cause and to the beach community.”

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Brent Bolthouse

 

Located in the trendy, beach-themed Pacific City mall (21058 Pacific Coast Highway), The Bungalow is the vision of owner Brent Bolthouse, who has another The Bungalow lounge in Santa Monica.

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Bolthouse says the goal of both lounges is to provide an “intimate setting” that’s like being in someone’s home. The 6,000-sq-ft.space is divided into separate rooms with sofas, comfortable chairs, pool tables, fireplaces, and a patio overlooking a million-dollar view of the beach.

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Warm and welcoming, The Bungalow is just steps from the sand, making it an ideal watering hole for beating the heat and savoring the lounge’s craft beer and signature drink selections.

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Add in an assortment of tacos, sliders and flat breads brought in from the lounge’s culinary partner The Bear Flag Fish Co. located downstairs and you’re all set.

Surfwriter Girls can easily see whiling away an afternoon or evening with Greg Kishel watching the beach action from The Bungalow’s patio or taking in one of HB’s picture-perfect sunsets.

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With The Bungalow on the scene, now there’s another reason for everyone to say “We’re goin’ to Surf City, gonna have some fun.”

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Five Best Surfing Spots in Europe

Epic Waves Await You!

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Written by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel

sign to beachLooking to escape the summer crowds at the world’s top surfing spots?

Then put Hawaii, Australia and Indonesia on hold and set your course in a different direction – to Europe.

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It turns out that Europe isn’t just a premiere ski destination, it also offers epic waves and beautiful beaches that are perfect for surfing.

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From a world-class surf break In Ireland on a beach with 300-million-year-old fossils…

 

to sun-kissed waves on golden sands in Spain, everything you’re looking for is just across The Pond.

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And, don’t worry that the waves won’t be big enough.

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At one EU surfing spot on our list legendary surfer Garrett McNamara made the Guinness Book of World Records in 2011 when he rode the biggest wave in history, a 78-ft monster…a feat he repeated at the same spot in 2013, riding an even bigger, 100-ft wave.

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SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel were excited to discover these off-the-beaten-path, European surfing gems.

To check out the Five Best Surfing Spots in Europe for yourself, take a look at the feature story our friends at BookSurfCamps.com shared with us. Written by Cristina Costea, a self-described “passionate traveler,” it will have you packing your board and heading to the airport. Just grab your passport and click here: Surf Europe

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Pollinator Decline Puts World’s Food Supply at Risk

United Nations Issues Warning

Bees, Birds, Butterflies Under Siege

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Written by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel

A recent report from the United Nations warns that pollinator species worldwide – the bees, butterflies, birds and bats that pollinate plants – are in danger of extinction. At risk are 40% of the bees and butterflies and 16% of birds and bats.

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This decline in pollinators of all kinds is critical to our food supply since 75% of food crops are at least partially dependent on pollination.

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“Pollinators are important contributors to world food production and nutritional security,” said Dr. Vera Lucia Imperatriz-Fonseca, who co-chaired the study. The health of the pollinators “is directly linked to our own well-being.”

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There are many reasons – both man-made and natural – that pollinators are declining: habitat loss due to farming and urban development, pesticide usage, parasites, disease, and global warming.

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The increasing trend of agribusinesses to plant giant areas of farmland devoted to single crops is eliminating the grasslands and wildflowers that the pollinators seek. The pollinators need the wildflowers, which, in turn, need the pollinators to reproduce.

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SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel learned that more than 20,000 species of wild bees help to pollinate plants.

Plus, many species of butterflies, flies, moths, wasps, beetles, birds, bats and other animals do, as well.

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Crops that depend on these pollinators include fruit, vegetables, seeds, nuts and oils – many of which provide essential vitamins and minerals to our diets.

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Others, such as coffee and cocoa, not only provide welcome indulgences, but needed income to developing nations.

The report, which was the work of researchers from 124 countries, highlighted the interdependence between animals, plants and man. It also noted that a number of steps can be taken to bring back the pollinators.

united-nations-reportU.N. Pollinator Report – 2016

These steps include:

Planting patches of wild flowers in agricultural areas could attract pollinators to crop fields.

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Cutting back on pesticide use in favor of organic farming methods is another way to protect and attract pollinators.

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Something as simple as planting flowers in our yards and putting out window boxes of flowers on ledges could make a difference, too.

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SurfWriter Girls are reminded of the classic folk song Where have all the flowers gone?

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For the sake of the pollinators, the answer is more important than ever now.

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California Impressionists Paint Lasting Memories

Picturesque Scenes of Early California

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Written by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel

Claude_Monet,_Impression,_soleil_levantImpression: Sunrise

Long after Claude Monet’s painting Impression: Sunrise captivated the art world in 1874, giving rise to the Impressionism movement, California’s own artists sought to utilize the style’s small, thin brushstrokes and open composition to depict the beauty of the beaches, valleys and mountains around them.

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Plein air painting class

In a renaissance of sorts, the state’s warm climate and magnificent scenery lured artists from their studios, taking easels, canvasses and paints into the great outdoors, eager to convey their own visions of nature.

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Painting outside (as the French called en plein air) during the first part of the 20th Century, the Impressionists collectively became known as the California Plein-Air School.

Mirroring the region’s rugged individualism and desire to break away from convention and East Coast and European traditions, the Impressionists boldly embraced the freedom to shape reality on stretched canvass.

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And, with new money flowing into the state as wealthy investors and industrialists and those seeking fame, fortune and good health made it their home, the artists were able to profit from their work.

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SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel love the vastness and vitality of the picturesque California scenes of undisturbed meadows, fields of flowers, bluffs over the ocean, hidden coves and towering mountains.

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hills and valleys

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Harking back to a time when orange groves were plentiful in the OC and the Santa Fe railroad trains rolled through the fields, the plein-air paintings have both artistic and historic significance.

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But, with the onset of the Great Depression and emergence of newer art movements, the California Impressionists’ art fell out of favor. And, like other treasures, it was lost…waiting to be found.

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Thankfully, it was, more than half a century later, most notably by art collector and philanthropist Joan Irvine Smith. In 1992 Smith established the Irvine Museum, “dedicated to the preservation and display of California art of the Impressionist Period (1890-1930).”

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With family ties dating back to the California gold rush and the founding of the Irvine Company, Orange County’s largest private land owner, Smith wanted to preserve the plein-air art that was so closely associated with California’s early years.watch Vacheron Constantin

Smith has said “looking at the pictures is like stepping back in time” and enables people to learn about the art period as well as the need to retain some of the environment in its natural state.

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You can experience for yourself the beauty of the Impressionists’ paintings at the Irvine Museum (18881 Von Karman Ave., Irvine). Its featured exhibit now, The Nature of Water, which runs through June 16, is as current as today’s news, focusing on California’s unspoiled oceans and waterways, while emphasizing the need for water conservation.

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Coral Reef Bleaching Crisis

World’s Coral Reefs Losing their Colors

A Global “White-Out”

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Written by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel

We’ve all heard that stress kills. But, did you know it can kill the Earth’s eco-systems, too – especially coral reefs?

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The bright, vivid orange, pink, purple and blue colors we’ve all come to associate with coral reefs may be a thing of the past if the impact of ocean temperature changes, water run-off pollution, and other environmental stressors aren’t reduced.

SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel learned that there is a worldwide coral bleaching crisis with colorful coral reefs turning from a healthy glow to a sickly white. This not only threatens the life of the reefs, but of the sea animals that inhabit them. And, with a fourth of the world’s marine species calling the reefs their home, this is no small matter.

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When the ocean is too warm or acidic coral expel the algae living in their tissues, draining themselves of nutrients and bleaching their colors until they turn white.

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wfcrcLogoSurfWriter Girls contact at The World Federation for Coral Reef Conservation, Vic Ferguson, the Executive Director, says this is one of the worst coral bleaching events in human history. “Scientists are calling it the severest yet. The human race has put its footprint on these precious ecosystems and we may lose them faster than we think.”

photo Vic Ferguson

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), “we may be losing somewhere in the range of 10 to 20 percent of the coral reefs this year.” It’s been especially bad in Hawaii in part because of the hot ocean waters produced by the the El Nino conditions.

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Other troubled coral reef spots include Florida, the Caribbean, Indian Ocean and Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

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Surf and ocean painter Nathan Paul Gibbs – a self-described “enviro-soldier” – captured the coral reef damage in his moving painting Acidification of the Great Barrier Reef.

 

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Gibbs has seen the dying coral firsthand. On a dive boat charter in Australia headed to the Barrier Reef’s outer reef, Gibbs remembers “we had to travel nearly an hour to get to the ‘good’ reef.'” This was because much of the reef had been destroyed, bleached by acidification due to toxic agricultural run-off from the farms in Queensland.

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NOAA Coral Reef Watch Coordinator Mark Eakin said, “This isn’t just a problem for divers and fish; coral reefs are crucial globally. Coral reefs protect shorelines, produce tourism dollars and help provide food for 500 million people around the world.”

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Ferguson, of the World Federation, says that his organization is working at the grass roots level around the world to share information with other environmental groups, governments, and individuals about the steps to take to better understand the coral reefs and how to protect them. He emphasizes that “we have a responsibility to share what we know about coral reef conservation with the rest of the world.”

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What can we do to keep the color in the world’s coral reefs?

Reducing our carbon footprints of energy use is a good place to start because that reduces global warming.

Cutting back on water usage and disposing of trash properly will help, too, by keeping waste water run-off and pollutants out of the ocean.

drains to ocean

Letting business and government leaders know it’s important – with our comments, purchases and votes.

With a little help from us, orange can be the new color of life.

yellow and pink coral

Surf’n Beach Scene Magazine

SurfWriter Girls

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Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel hold the exclusive rights to this copyrighted material. Publications wishing to reprint it may contact them at surfwriter.girls@gmail.com Individuals and non-profit groups are welcome to post it on social media sites as long as credit is given.

Robbie Maddison’s Pipe Dream

Catching a Wave With Robbie Maddison

Australian motorbike rider pulls off amazing stunt!

pipe dream

Written by SurfWriter Girls Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel

When the weather is great and it’s an awesome day, what are you going to do – ride a dirt bike or go surfing?

robbie maddison DCFor Australian motorbike stunt rider Robbie “Maddo” Maddison the answer is “both.”

Robbie with bike

Maddo, the motorbike stunt double for James Bond actor Daniel Craig in the Bond movie Skyfall, spent two years preparing to live his pipe dream of surfing on a dirt bike.

skyfall-robbie-maddison-stunt

This year he succeeded, partnering with DC shoes to turn his dream into a reality, surfing on his dirt bike in Tahiti.

islands-of-tahiti

Underwater DC shoes

Drawing stares and applause from amazed onlookers, Maddo’s stunt, immortalized in the Pipe Dream video by DC, has had more than 22 million views.

Robbie Maddison

To see Maddo’s epic bike ride and an exclusive interview with him by Cristina Costea, take a look at this feature story SurfWriter Girls friends at BookSurfCamps.com shared with us. Just click on: Pipe Dream

Then hold on for the ride of a lifetime!

Surf’n Beach Scene Magazine

SurfWriter Girls

Please post your comment below. Comments will appear the next day.

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Sunny Magdaug and Patti Kishel hold the exclusive rights to this copyrighted material. Publications wishing to reprint it may contact them at surfwriter.girls@gmail.com Individuals and non-profit groups are welcome to post it on social media sites as long as credit is given.