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The Catalina Islander
Avalon, California
June 18, 2010     The Catalina Islander
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June 18, 2010

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Friday, June 18, 2010 The CATALINA ISLANDER Page 13 From page 12 and for God's awesome creation," Foote said. Two Harbors resident and Island Supplier barge operator, Chris Barios, who raced last year as a part of a relay team, will serve this year as an escort boat opera- tor. He will be escorting Natalie's friend, a first-time channel cross- er and a recent addition to the Isthmus community, your humble correspondent. How do these athletes get involved in the sport? Theresa Hernandez Mcdowell, who has raced three times said that she got involved,"just to see if I could do it" and notes, "how truly awesome it was to experience the ocean up close, expressing wonder along the race at how God made this and God made that, from the tiny crea- tures to the enormity of it all." Both Chris Barios and Natalie Foote said they have Theresa to thank for their own involvement in the sport. They said Theresa's passion fueled their own. Steve Whittington, also a Two Harbors resident, said that he got involved, "in order to stay in shape for surfing, but then it became more than that." _ ."tt is a~wor'~lerfut way_ofget, ting close to the ocean, hearing: the sounds of the board hitting the water, experiencing isolation on an ocean that is always chang- ing; it is never the same," he said. Other former and current Island- residents to cross the channel are Baywatch Paramedics Kevin Her protbssionalism, w(}rl Marbi,,-Dttstm Stevens ~nd Ku~, The 2010 Rock to Rock Paddleboard race will take place this Sunday, June 20th. Athletes will begin their voyages at 6:30 a.m. from the North side of the pier. Paddlers will range in age from teens to sixties. The young- est,,p,a~dl~l~arde3~ this year ~ffom the Island ,is Natalie Foote, 19. The yotmgest channel-crosser ever was Parker Dunbar, who success- fully made the crossing tfiree years in a row at 13. 14 and 15 years of age. One might wonder who prof- its from these races. Typicfilly athletes finishing in the top places are the only ones to go home with more resources than they started out with. usually receiving small prizes donated by sponsors. For example, the top fin- ishers this year will receive prod- ucts donated by Hinano Tahiti, Keanon and Body Glove. For the majority of the partic- ipants, on the other hand, the time, cost. and hassles of participating are significant. Between the effort and expenses related to the escort boats (fuel, moorings, boat prepa- ration), the effort and organiza- tion in planning accommodations, together with the regular race fees and a racer's own board and gear expenses, each athlete spends a serious amount of time and money preparing for the race. Additionally, although the race committees .are not technical- ly classified as non-profit organi- zations, the race organizers do not profit from the event either. Once all the T-shirts and banners have been ordered and the pre and post meals have been served, organiz- ers typically hope to break even when it's all said and done. So why do the organizers and partici- pants put forth so many resources in order to conduct and participate in a race that pushes so many physical and logistical limits? Having done a pole of organiz- ers and participants it appears that the answer lies in the act of coming close to an object of desire, mys- tery and power. Some athletes, like Whittington, paddle as a means of drawing close to the ocean itself. Others, such as Theresa Hernandez McDowell paddle in order to experi- ence the vastness of God's creation. Others, like George Loren, (athlete and organizer) paddle for the cama- raderie and competitiveness among athletes, who together approach and exceed the limits of the ordinary. Others, such as Kyle Daniels, (win- ner of nine races), said that he pad- dies, "for the solitude and sanctuary of being on the ocean," and added with a light-spirited laugh, "plus the phone doesn't ring when you're out on the water." As for the escort boaters and organizers, the reward appears to come from sharing with and sup- porting others in their pursuits to overcome fear, challenge lim- its and pursue relationships with the natural world, God and each other. The record time for the Rock 2 Rock on stock boards is 4:04.46. set by Mike Inscore in 1998; the record on unlimited boards for the Rock 2 Rock is 3:23.05, set by Ryan Anderson in 2004. The record for the Catalina Classic on stock boards is 5:55.31, set by Gary Fortune in 1999 (and almost trumped by Tito Bourget in 2009 with a time of 5:55.48); the record on unlimited boards for the Catalina Classic is 5:02.12, set by Tim Gair in 1999. The registration for the Rock 2 Rock this year is closed. In order to participate in this summer's Catalina Classsic, which takes place on Sunday, August 29th, ath- letes must pre-qualify, For more information, check the Web site: h ttp : l lwww. cata linac lass i cpadd l e- Registration for the Catalina Classic can be found on - Contact us at 310) 510-0500 or I would like t0publicly thank Kelly Nelson of Catalina Island Real Estate for rep- resenting me in the sale of mv home on Descanso Ave. .......... M}ore'impo ant!y, she:has-'becomes:a-new found friend to me. i would highly reconi- needing a Realtor. Thanks again Kelly for all that you have done woman to work with. ._'; 2 7 P';7~ i I