Friday, December 18, 2009

I sure freaking hope so

The promoters of the Swamis surf contest don’t want to answer questions.A few days ago we posted the amount promoters are poised to take in, which was a huge surprise to many people in the city who thought that the contest was all about charity, supporting women longboarders, and was being moved to Swamis because of permit costs at Cardiff Reef.

Using the promoter’s documentation we estimated that the revenue will exceed $150,000. There is plenty of room in that budget for Cardiff Reef fees.

Money, it should be noted, played a role in Benson’s decision to pass on Cardiff, the logistically easy choice. The state of California’s Department of Parks and Recreation, in its finite wisdom, charges about $7,000 a day to contest promoters for use of its beach.

This, to put it nicely, is a rip-off. Encinitas, on the other hand, would charge a small fraction of that sum for a permit at Swami’s [$300].

The cost of a permit was “a main thing” in turning Benson’s gaze to Swami’s, she said.

Is the public being manipulated? It is hard to tell because the promoters have refused to have a conversation with us and they leave us to draw lines between dots. As always, we would welcome their editorial submissions.

$30,000 is only 20% of the projected revenue. Yeah, that’s a minimum, but this is the biggest thing to ever to happen to Encinitas. We've had surf contests in Encinitas before. I think the Chamber of Commerce CEO wouldn't make such a huge claim if he didn’t know something was special about this event. The athletes should be calling for a bigger cut of the pie and asking for the budget to be transparent so they don't get exploited.

The revenue for the contest is probably going to be more than $150,000 and that is probably why the promoters don’t want to answer hard questions.

The revenue breakdown for the contest includes 4 “supporting” sponsors at $25,000 each. The revenue figure does not include the amount for the title sponsor. The title sponsor has already come on board. It is Gidget International!

Until people in the know are willing to talk, lets just assume that the title sponsor is going to fork out twice the supporting sponsor amounts. So that brings in another $50,000.

$50,000 + $150,000=$200,000

Dang! That’s a lot. Maybe this explains why dissenters are under attack and why people don't want to answer questions.

People in the surf press have told me that no one in the surf industry is going to fork over much money for this contest, especially when the risk of the contest going sour is so high. THE MAIN SPONSOR IS NOT A SURF COMPANY. It is just another "interloper*" company that is selling the surf image to the masses.

Why would Gidget fork out $50,000 for a contest which has brought angst to the community?

This event is not about the community. It is about selling plastic sparkly earrings with Miley Cryus pictures on them, and lunch boxes, Halloween costumes, action figures, posters, TV shows and movies. It is going to be the next Star Wars franchise. Big bucks and it’s the third big sell out of surfing. This is not going to make surfing better in the long run.

This summer Miley Cyrus signed on to make the first in a series of Gidget movies.
Miley Cryus' hobbies include:

Her favorite hobby is SHOPPING!!!!! She obviously also likes to sing and act.

Her contract for 6 movies and merchandising is reported to reach $500,000,000.00. That's a lot of shopping.

You bet Gidget would fork out at least $50,000. They could also afford the permit costs at Cardiff reef. If the first Gidget movie comes out next summer then the Swamis contest will be positioned to hype all the Christmas shopping run-up for the Gidget merchandise.

I would rather see a charity event at Swamis. The promoters could choose to work for a good cause and pull the permits under the name of a good charity instead of Gidget International. I think one of the reasons the promoters don’t want to talk is that it will be plainly evident that this event is not about charity. This whole thing is kinda like green-washing. I call it charity-washing.

Maybe we got it all wrong. I sure freaking hope so.


  1. We shouldn't sell our beaches. This includes Cardiff Reefs. Why would you state that is terrible for Swamis but not Cardiff Reefs? It makes no sense to let these commercial companies use our beaches for profit. BTW that includes all these surf camps.

  2. Dear anon 701,

    As I've stated before. If Cardiff was the last Domino to fall it would be an issue too. In fact, recent contests at Cardiff Reef have been opposed. My personal stance is that we don't need more contests but if it is decided to have contests at swamis it should balanced out with fewer contest slots at Cardiff Reef.

    Also, I've also worked on the surf camp issue. It is a problem when commercial surf schools take over entire surf peaks to the point of functional exclusion of the rest of the community. It is worse than localism. My efforts have helped improve the situation at San Elijo.

  3. The guy who wrote all the songs for Miley's first album is from Encinitas.

  4. Would that be Steve Aceti?

  5. The plot sickens. The city and mayor are getting seriously played on this one. For a mere $300 a day an international corporation gets to begin a major viral marketing campaign at the crown jewel of Encinitas. USA! USA! USA!

  6. So the celebration of womens surfing is really the exploitation of womens surfing. Nice catch.

  7. So anti-capitalist with all the "beware the profit" mudslinging. But I am left wondering at two of the most outspoken men against this contest who are:

    1) a businessman seeking to open his own surf shop? Will this shop be "non-profit"? Or is it just EVERYBODY else who should give their money away?
    2) a businessman seeking to promote "The Sacred Craft CONSUMER Expo"?

    And is it not also true the JP is now exhibiting at aforementioned "Sacred" Craft CONSUMER expo this coming year?

    The hypocrisy is astounding. I don't blame the contest promoters for steering clear, they don't owe paranoid sycophants ANY explanation. The attempts to draw the promoters out are entertaining, at least.

    Also, you should check your numbers, fellas. It doesn't sound like any ground work is going into figuring out how much an average contest costs to run: judge's salaries, staff salaries, event planner salary, rental fees for all the scaffolding, equipment, etc. etc. The gap you are talking about is not completely profit, much of it is how much the event will cost to RUN. You honestly think a contest costs only the amount a city charges? But your excuse is "WAH, they won't talk to us so this must be a conspiracy to make someone else money!" Lay off the resin fumes, dude.

    Linda has promised to open her books, as I saw in her earlier attempts on this blog to communicate. Sounds to me like she has nothing to hide. Will JP open his books when his store opens? I'd like to make sure that all his profits are not going to him and his family, but to a VALID charity, designated by me, of course.

  8. JP and Scott aren't the most outspoken objectors. JP and Scott just happen to be writers. Tina "mouse" Jacobs is by far the most outspoken. You'll find her surfing Swamis most mornings.

  9. Well now, here we go parsing the difference between the necessary verbal effusion of speech vs. the lasting affect of the written.

    Jacobs would seem to be more "outspoken" only in the most literal use of the word. Anyone who wishes to be more effective (reaching more people) communicators use today's most memetic platform, blogs or other electronic platforms to reach more than those within the audible vicinity.

    JP and Scott "just happen to be writers" just like TV anchor people "just happen" to be on TV. Writers take up their trade in order to impact an intentionally larger sphere of people than that made possible by speaking alone. They believe they have something other people need/want to hear. Writers are presumptuous this way. They don't "happen" upon their skills or their platform.

    They are using their platform (the swiftest platform of communication currently known to humans) in a more efficient way than Tina Jacobs so I do feel that I am emboldened to say,

    "JP and Scott are more outspoken."

  10. But nobody reads the Leucadia blog.

  11. Earth to freakazoid. Opening a retail surf shop isn't in the same ball park as taking over a public surf spot for a week. Back away from the bong.

  12. I'm pretty sure that JP is not trying to open his shop inside a government building for next to nothing in rent, and keeping the rest of the public from using that building. Big difference.

    Where exactly has Linda promised to open her books?

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  14. Oh, and if it weren't obvious, we aren't done with the analysis of the contest. We'd love to hear from the promoters how much they are going to spend on operations. We already have an idea of how much it costs to run other contests and it is not even close to the revenues. If this was was actually a charity event they would not need to pay staff for three days.

  15. K.C. @ 7:18

    Linda said she would open her books on a comment she made (the only one she posted) HERE on the Leucadia Blog:

    "...those 'books' can certainly be open to the public."


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